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European Investment Bank Sponsors Six EU Parliamentarians Visit o Kenya

Apr 6, 2023
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A delegation of six Members of the European Parliament is visiting Kenya to see first-hand how the European Investment Bank (EIB), which is the European Union (EU)’s lending arm, is supporting high impact investment in Kenya. The members are part of the Committee on Development which covers EU development policies globally.

The parliamentarians had the chance to be briefed on the EIB’s projects in Kenya touching on the areas of Sustainable Development Goals, Climate Change, Food Security, EU-Kenya partnerships, improving development effectiveness and global health.

They undertook site visits to several EU and EIB-funded projects to get a better understanding of the investment in the region, and in particular Kenya’s efforts to deal with prolonged drought and the worsening impact of climate shocks.

The European Investment Bank is the world’s largest international public bank and is owned directly by the 27 EU member states. EIB’s operations in Kenya represent a significant amount of Europe’s overall support to the country delivered through the Member states and their bilateral agencies with whom EIB co-operates closely.

During a visit to Vert Limited, one of the agribusiness companies that is benefiting from EIB funding, Edward Claessen, the Head of the EIB Regional Hub in Nairobi said, “We are honoured by the visit from the Members of the European Parliament. To date, EIB has signed more than 60 projects in Kenya and invested more than Ksh 223B in the country. Our projects span the areas of energy, water, targeted urban development and social infrastructure, financial inclusion and private sector investment to support MSMEs.”

“The EIB will continue to stand by its Kenyan and regional partners because business investment is ever more important in getting Kenya to fully recover from the COVID pandemic and recent economic shocks as well as building a stronger, more inclusive, greener and digital-led economy. Our focus is on continued partnership in sustainable growth/ job creation; accelerating green transition & digital transition; strengthening health systems and improving education and training,” he added.

On her part, the Co-Founder and Managing Director of Vert Limited, Jane Maina said that she was very thankful for the support shown by the European Investment Bank to grow the agribusiness value chain.

“We support a small holder farmer base of over 5,000 countrywide from whom we source for fruits and fresh produce which are then mainly exported to the European Market. The financing we received enabled us to increase the quantity of mangoes we purchased from smallholder farmers, creating and sustaining 95 permanent jobs and over 300 temporary jobs during the peak seasons as well as creating countless other indirect jobs across the chain. I am one example of many other businesses that have grown or expanded due to EIB financing” she said.

The lead of the Delegation, Dr. Pierrette Herzberger- Fofana said, “We are very pleased with the work and impact that the EU and EIB funding is having on the ground. We shall be your ambassadors back in Europe to articulate the need for increased investment in the projects in Kenya as they are helping create sustainable jobs and grow the economy. We look forward to the continued partnership between the EU and Kenya.”

The visit comes after a highly successful EU-Kenya business forum held last month which was graced by H.E. President William Ruto and other high ranking government officials. The forum brought together members the business community from the EU and Kenya.

Kenya remains a key economic and political partner for the EU, with an important role as a regional peace broker and energy producer.

Under a recently signed Global Gateway Africa – Europe Investment Package, EIB aims to support Africa for a strong, inclusive, green and digital recovery and transformation by accelerating the green energy transition, digital transition, sustainable growth and job creation as well as strengthening education and health systems.

The Investment Package will be delivered through the EIB, EU and its Member States as well as other European financial institutions working together with local stakeholders to support concrete and transformational projects jointly identified in priority areas.

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