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US investors eye bigger share of Kenyan market


President Uhuru Kenyatta and his American counterpart Joe Biden at The White House in Washington DC. PHOTO | PSCU.

US President Joe Biden’s administration and American firms are expected to announce new investments in Kenya across sectors such as energy, health and agri-business as top officials and business delegation land in Nairobi this week.

A brief released ahead of the visit by the US government seen by Business Daily said US deputy assistant secretary of State Akunna Cook and Prosper Africa acting chief operating officer Leslie Marbury will travel to Kenya alongside Nigeria, South Africa, and Namibia on an economic diplomacy visit, between February 14 and March 1.

“The delegation will meet with entrepreneurs, women-owned and small and medium-sized enterprises, investors, and policy-makers to drive US trade and investment in Africa’s creative industries, ICT and digital technologies, and energy and infrastructure, among other fast-growing sectors,” said the US State Department.

The visit by the US officials is part of president Biden’s new push to expand business ties between US companies and African countries like Kenya.

The effort is part of the revival of Prosper Africa, an initiative began by former US President Donald Trump in 2018 that the Biden administration aims to make the “centrepiece of US economic and commercial engagement with Africa.”

“The delegation will advance this commitment by connecting businesses and investors with Prosper Africa tools and resources to remove trade and investment barriers, drive transactions forward, and promote market opportunities,” said the US government on the visit.

Prosper Africa will focus on clean energy, health, agribusiness and transportation infrastructure. President Biden, who requested nearly $80 million (Sh9 billion) for the initiative in his budget proposal last year, aims to focus it on women and equity, with an expanded role for small- and medium-sized businesses.

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