Kenya, which has the largest economy in east Africa, has been a focal point of the continent’s recent economic renaissance and a shining example of the kind of development that is possible on the continent.
The country had record quarterly highs of up to 11% in the third quarter of 2011 as it grew at an average annual GDP growth rate of 5.5% (sub-Saharan Africa’s average GDP growth rate -2.9%). Political and economic transformation have been highlighted as the main forces behind this growth.
- Political reform
In 2010, Kenya ushered in a new political and economic governance system with the passage of a new constitution in 2010 that introduced a bicameral legislative house, and devolved the county government structure. Following elections, a new and popular President was sworn in and is currently serving the last of his two five- year tenures, ending in 2022.
- Economic Reform
Under the new political system led by Uhuru Kenyatta, Kenya has become one of the fastest-growing economies in sub-Saharan Africa, ranking amongst the top three African countries on the ease of doing business 2. Nairobi, its capital, has also emerged as a leader in digital technologies in Africa.
The performance of the economy has been boosted by a stable macroeconomic environment, positive investor confidence and a resilient services sector.
Key industries leading the growth of the Kenyan economy are;
- Service Sector
Kenyan Service Sector The service sector is the most valuable area of the Kenyan Economy, and can be broadly sub-divided into 2 major areas: tourism and financial activities5.
The Financial activities within the service sector can broadly be classified into the financial and telecommunications industries. However, with mobile phone coverage estimated at 75.8 people per 100 and the significant rise of Telebanking in the
country, both sectors are now closely linked. Furthermore, Nairobi is regarded the financial center of East Africa6 .
Tourism and transportation are also important for the economy, as Kenya remains an important vacation destination and a regional hub for logistics.
Listed Kenyan Service Companies
There are only 6 companies listed on the Kenyan Stock Exchange (KSE) as service companies. These companies listed below are spread across the Tourism industry value chain and media, including a printing company
Kenya Airways- Aviation
TPS Eastern Africa- Hospitality
Uchumi Supermarket – Retail
Scan Group, Nation Media Group – Media
Longhorn Publishers – Printing
Express – Logistics