Kenya still remains the most preferred investment destination in East and Central Africa region, according to Kenya Investment Authority.
This comes after the World Economic Forum released a report on Global Competitiveness that placed Kenya at position 99 out of 144 economies, from 90 in 2014/15.
The report cited high taxes and corruption levels as the major hindrances in positioning Kenya as an attractive investment region. However, Kenya Investment Authority (KenInvest) Managing Director Moses Ikiara said that the report will have little or no effect at all on investors. “It is true that we have corruption in the country as it is everywhere. But the high levels are just a perception that most of us Kenyans have which has reflected on the global platform,” said Ikiara to The Standard.
Ikiara said loyal and determined investors have and will always come to the ground to determine the truth for themselves. “Some are even willing to work hand in hand with government agencies in curbing the highlighted vices. They know they cannot rely alone on reports as they do not paint a full picture of the country’s economic environment,” he said. “We need to be accountable ourselves starting by our own investors in the Small and Medium-Enterprise (SMEs) sector.”
Earlier, SMEs had been noted by the taxman for being unresponsive in tax compliance. Despite registering tremendous growth courtesy of the largest labour force in the market than any other sector (82 per cent), Kenya Revenue Authority is still finding it difficult in netting these businesses in the tax bracket.