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Technology companies root for ICT investment in Kenya

The National Association of Software and Service Companies (NASSCOM) has hosted a delegation on how to boost the Information Communication Technology (ICT) sector between India and Kenya.

Speaking at the event, Kenya Investment Authority (KenInvest) head of ICT, Mr. Norman Boinett highlighted why it is important for investors to invest in the ICT sector in Kenya, because it has sophisticated market, access to regional markets, high literacy rate, vibrant startup and innovation ecosystem, very supportive government and a ready infrastructure.

“We have quite a number of areas that you can look at including Internet of Things (IoT), corporate IT, 4G and 5G networks, cyber security and Konza technopolis that holds a lot of opportunities for infrastructure, education and enterprise incubation,” said Boinnet.

He further stated that the new government, within its strategic factors, is looking at a number of issues for instance increasing partners in broad banks, enhancement of government service delivery, establishing Africa regional hub, increasing cost of coal and establishing a presidential advisory council on science and technology policy.

Boinnet said that apart from KenInvest, there are a number of institutions that can also support the investors including Communication Authority, ICT Authority, Konza Technopolis Authority and other agencies which are within the sector.

The Indian High Commissioner to Kenya, Namgya Khampa noted that NASSCOM is the leading Information Technology (IT) industry association in driving the ICT sector in India and it aims at bringing together government and business stakeholders with specific interests in ICT and related sub-sectors from India and Kenya.

She revealed that they have ICT business delegates that have travelled to Kenya to explore and develop partnership and tap into investment opportunities, adding that India is among the top investors in Kenya, cutting across manufacturing, real estate, pharmaceuticals, IT and banking.

“India remains one of Kenya’s largest trading and business investment partners and in the last financial year there was a growth of 40 per cent, which is approximately 2.8M dollars that include both exports and imports from India to and from Kenya,” she said.

NASSCOM Vice president Mr. Shivendra Singh, in his presentation, gave an overview of the already existing strong ICT sector in India and its growth potential and mentioned that India-Kenya can look to join hands for ‘government to business’ and ‘business to business’ opportunities in the sector and described Kenya as a well suited partner for Indian companies.

By Hellen Mwangi and Edna Okoth

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