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Government keen on ensuring conducive environment for digital growth

The Government has embarked on developing robust policy, legal and regulatory environment to accelerate the digital transformation in the country so as to spur growth in the technology sector.

State Department of ICT & Innovation Principal Secretary (PS), Mr Jerome Ochieng, noted that digital skills and competencies that are backed by policies are critical in supporting national development goals through digital economy.

PS Jerome further said that in as much as the Covid-19 pandemic has greatly affected all sectors of the global economy, it has, however, brought greater appreciation of the role of technology and innovations in meeting the demands of contemporary challenges.

“The ICT sector has become a key enabler of the recovery efforts being put in place to get economies humming again. The silver lining has been the acceleration of the adoption of digital and tech solutions in almost all sectors of the economy with delivery platform services,” explained the PS.

Jerome was delivering a key note address, while officiating the launch of Glovo Micro Fulfilment Centre in Nairobi, the first such centre for the Company in Africa.

The PS further stated that Kenya has always provided a conducive environment for greater investment in the e-commerce sector.

He said that adoption of new technologies and sustained innovation are imperative in order to secure a strong future in the digital economy.

“The delivery sector needs to build on its vast network for enhanced last mile deliveries, latching on the momentum created by the Covid-19 pandemic,” he advised.

He reiterated government’s commitment to develop a robust policy, legal and regulatory environment to accelerate digital transformation so as to spur growth in the technological sector.

“The draft Digital Economy Strategy of Kenya 2021, once it goes through the whole process, will provide a roadmap through which the Country will promote adoption and deployment of technology as we seek to become a middle-income economy by the year 2030,” said Jerome.

He further noted that the enactment of the Data Protection Act 2019 to regulate the collection and processing of personal data was also a critical component in stimulating public confidence in the digital transformation agenda.

Jerome quoted some reports that revealed that the total value of e-commerce in Africa reached 16.5 billion dollars in 2017 and is expected to reach 29 billion dollars in 2022.

“As Government we are committed to tapping this potential for the benefit of our citizens,” the PS said.

He urged all players in the digital space to explore the available opportunities to develop new products as well as add value to existing products in order to build momentum towards a vibrant e-commerce in the Country.

Jerome lauded Glovo efforts in making Kenya their preferred investment location for the first micro fulfilment centre in Africa, further acknowledging the work of ICT staff who have kept such digital spaces highly available and secure amidst a global increase in cyber threats.

“Keep innovation and developing new products and services that meet the ever-growing demand of a digitally engaged populace,” he concluded.

Glovo is a start-up founded in 2015 in Barcelona and since then, has expanded its operations to three continents – Europe, Africa, and South America.

The service is present in over 20 countries and more than 100 cities (including Paris, Madrid, Sao Paulo, Buenos Aires, Istanbul, Cairo, Uganda, Portugal, South Africa and Kenya among other Countries.

Every month, around three (3) million orders are being delivered through the App under an average delivery time of 45 minutes.

Glovo CEO Oscar Pierre, thanked the government for the conducive business environment in the country, affirming that the business enjoys adequate and reliable market for favourable returns.

Priscilla Muhiu, Glovo’s Head of Marketing for Sub-Saharan Africa said the launch in Nairobi had strengthened its operations in Africa and reinforces the transformation that the on-demand economy and delivery sector is undergoing in Kenya.

By Alice Gworo 

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