Kenyan manufacturers launch policy to support recovery from COVID-19

NAIROBI, Feb. 10 (Xinhua) — Kenyan manufacturers Wednesday launched a policy plan to support the recovery of the sector from the devastating effects of the COVID-19 pandemic.

Mucai Kunyiha, chairperson of Kenya Association of Manufacturers (KAM) told a virtual press conference that the 2021 Manufacturing Priority Agenda (MPA) provides a strategy to guide the public and private sector to urgently address the challenges facing local industrialists.

“The medium and small entrepreneurs are the future of manufacturing, and if fully supported, they will support robust economic recovery and job creation,” Kunyiha said.

The MPA is an annual publication that guides the manufacturers’ advocacy efforts through five pillars identified to boost the sector.

Kunyiha observed that efforts to enhance the productivity of the manufacturing sector have been hampered by the increasing cost of doing business coupled with low competitiveness.

“Some of the issues that contribute to this are regulatory overreach, high cost of energy, transport and logistics costs,” he added.

According to the lobby, globalization has made it impossible to insulate local production or demand from international competition and changes.

“Kenya remains disadvantaged because it is about 12.8 percent uncompetitive relative to regional countries,” Kunyiha said.

He added that local producers require compliance support mechanisms and corrective action plans to prevent the domestic manufacturers from facing unfair competition from abroad.

He noted that the manufacturing sector share of the economy has declined to its lowest point in recent times having recorded 7.2 percent of gross domestic product (GDP) in 2020.

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