Following an MOU between Kenya Development Corporation (KDC) and United Green, Kenya has received a major boost in agri-fintech services for rural communities, which will see the country reduce its food import costs by US$200 million annually.
The move is set to develop an advanced US$275 million climate-smart agri-food systems investment to improve food security for Kenya and the region.
The agri-fintech service will also focus on high productivity, climate-smart farming, and state-of-the-art agroprocessing facilities.
Over 100,000 rural households are optimistic about new markets over the next five years out of the agreement.
Speaking at the event, Ministry of Investment, Trade, and Industry Cabinet Secretary Rebecca Miano stated the project aligns with the national government’s Bottom-Up Economic Transformation Agenda (BETA).
“Kenya needs a champion organisation to provide leadership and prudent investment to develop inclusive, scalable, market-based, environmentally sustainable, and high-productivity agri-food systems,” Miano maintained.
United Green Chief Investment Officer, Rod Basset, expressed his contentment with the partnership, noting that it is a real-world solution addressing the impact of climate change and delivering regional food security.
“We are proud to be working in partnership with such committed partners in KDC and the Government of Kenya to deliver real-world solutions to address the impact of climate change and deliver regional food security.
We are also proud of working with key development partners who are assisting to build a sustainable and innovative business in the sector together,” said Basset.
Also speaking during the MoU signing, KDC Director General Norah Ratemo said the partnership with the United Green Group is a significant step forward in efforts to adapt to climate change and address food security in Kenya.
“At KDC, we are committed to fostering resilience and adaptation across the agricultural sector. We continue to work closely with the Government of Kenya, development partners, and private sector stakeholders to implement innovative solutions that will enable our farmers to thrive in a changing climate,” said Ratemo.
Meanwhile, British High Commissioner to Kenya Neil Wigan stressed that the UK Government applauds the strong commitment and close collaboration shown by British Company United Green and the Kenyan Government in this truly transformative investment in Kenya’s agri-food sector.
“The investment will support the Kenyan government’s strong commitment to agricultural transformation, increase productivity and output, enhance livelihoods, and strengthen Kenya’s food security in the face of global threats,” he highlighted.
Further, the agri-food investment will focus on key strategic objectives, including climate-smart and sustainable farming, improved nutrition, job creation focusing on women and youth, and inclusive and demand-driven consumer markets.
KDC’s mandate is to promote sustainable economic development by providing development finances, infrastructure finance, business support, and advisory services to medium- and large-scale industries, infrastructure projects, and commercial undertakings in target sectors in the country and elsewhere.
Additionally, KDC’s model is to partner with the private sector to catalyse development.
By Damaris Munyao and Cynthia Cherotich