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Tuesday, 09 Apr 2019

In Kenya, mobile money services increased the proportion of Kenyans accessing financial services to 82.9%.

Insights Africa

Economic Outlook

Economic Outlook

  • In Kenya, mobile money services increased the proportion of Kenyans accessing financial services to 82.9%. Moreover, in Uganda, mobile money is now the main driver of formal financial inclusion, with 22 million registered accounts compared to just 5 million registered accounts in traditional banks.
  • Kenya launched an UN-backed hub named Trade for Sustainable Development Hub (T4SD) to promote transition of small and medium enterprises (SMEs) to join the green economy.
  • Foreign currency deposits in Kenyan banking institutions increased by 21.6% in 2018 noting that remittances being among the major drivers of the growth. The Central Bank of Kenya (CBK) showed that the deposits reached 581.9 BN KES (5.7 BN USD) in 2018 compared to 478.8 BN KES (4.7 BN USD) in 2017.
  • The Kenya-China Economic and Trade Association (KCETA) announced the creation of the Jin Yetao Scholarship to support vocational and technical training development in Kenya. The Scholarship will begin operations immediately with an initial 1.5 MM KES (14,910 USD) allocated to benefit 15 students.
  • In Uganda, the Microfinance Support Centre is getting 43 BN KES (427.4 MM USD) to lend savings and credit cooperative societies (SACCOS) at an interest rate of 8%. The money is part of the 125 BN KES (1.2 BN USD) in 2019/2020 budgeted to provide low cost credit to Ugandans through the Uganda Development Bank (UDB) and the Microfinance Support Centre.
  • The bilateral trade volume between Zambia and China has reached 5 BN USD in 2018 for the first time in the 55 years history of economic and cooperation between the two countries.
  • According to the 2019 annual report from the World Travel and Tourism Council, Ethiopia is the fastest growing travel destination in the world with Rwanda in 6th place and Uganda at 12th.
Political Events

Political Events

  • The Trump-Kenyatta partnership is about investments, security, support and development. Kenya is already a hub for numerous US companies spending 1 BN USD (100 BN KES) in improving healthcare, agriculture, education and security.
  • The East African dream of achieving a seamless Northern Corridor transport network is back on course after Uganda agreed to start construction of the Standard Gauge Railway (SGR) from Malaba to Kampala after years of uncertainties.
Stock Market

Stock Market

Stanbic Holdings Ltd and DFCU Ltd have posted significant trading turnover at the Uganda Securities Exchange in Q1-2019 despite the January-March low season.
Companies Transactions

Companies Transactions

  • Liberty Group, a South African insurance firm, has put on sale its Kenyan investment advisory business, Stanlib, which has 135 BN KES (1.34 BN USD) worth of assets under its management.
  • Leading Rwandan investment company, Crystal Ventures, expressed interest in partnering small businesses in Zimbabwe to assist in the country's economic growth.
  • Cisco announced the launch of a 69 MM KES (685,884 USD) Incubation HUB in Kenya to be hosted at the University of Nairobi.
  • Myspace Properties Limited is now the 5th enterprise and first property company to join the Ibuka program after undergoing a severe evaluation in order to boost the growth and accelerate the expansion of Myspace properties.
  • Mayfair Insurance net profit increased by more than a third reaching 362 MM KES (3.58 MM USD) in 2018 on the back of increased income. Total income increased by 13% registering 2.1 BN KES (20.8 MM USD).
  • South African insurance firm, Sanlam Group, has sold part of its stake in Nairobi-based asset manager Sanlam Investments East Africa (SIEA), formerly PineBridge, for 730 MM KES (7.2 MM USD).
  • Kenyan commercial banks' staff payrolls increased by 1 BN KES (9.9 MM USD) in 2018, edging closer to hitting an all-time high of 100 BN KES (994 MM USD). The Bank employees earned a total of 99.13 BN KES (985.3 MM USD) in 2018, indicating the effects of wage inflation in the industry.


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