Kenya and Germany have signed Sh11.7 billion bilateral funding agreements, which will be directed to the Big Four agenda projects such as irrigation, food security, healthcare and technical training.
Speaking on Friday during the signing of the agreements, Treasury Cabinet Secretary Henry Rotich said since 1961, technical and financial assistance from Germany to Kenya had reached Sh240 billion mainly directed to governance, agriculture, food security, drought resilience programmes, water sector development, education, energy, youth employment and technical training.
Rotich said the government has put in place policy and technical measures to ensure that the money goes to the intended use and is not embezzled.
“The money available in the Kenya-Germany development cooperation amounts to over Sh7.2 billion, with the new commitment consisting of Sh4.6 billion as loans and Sh815 million grants for financial cooperation and Sh1.9 billion grants for technical cooperation. The areas of focus are Technical and Vocational Education and Training (Tvets) sector, Agriculture and good governance,” he said.
Rotich said that they have had negotiations on development cooperation programmes for the next two years with Germany and other development partners, which addressed delays in releasing funds, work permits and low absorption rate.
German ambassador to Kenya Annett Gunther said her country is committed to strengthening its commitment to the Tvet sector by establishing three centers of excellence and hubs for young entrepreneurs, aimed at empowering the youth and enhancing employability.
“In order to promote good governance, Germany offers Kenya support on anti-corruption policies and the implementation of the UN Agenda 2030,” she said.
On the planned merger between NIC Bank and Commercial Bank of Africa (CBA), the CS said the move is welcome as it is a voluntary merger, which Treasury has been advocating for so that the county can have strong banks that can give credit to small and medium-sized enterprises (SMEs).
“We are not big players in the African banking industry and such mergers will ensure we have local banks that can compete in the continent,” he said.