President Uhuru Kenyatta of Kenya, together with 16 other African leaders are in London attending the first ever UK-Africa Investment Summit.
Kenyatta, who recently vowed to remove all constraints to the growth of Micro, Small, and Medium Enterprises while addressing the issue of capping interest rates and its setbacks in Kenyan bank operations, has rallied for stronger trade ties between African countries and the United Kingdom.
“There is probably no better time for African nations and the United Kingdom to explore new and innovative ways of deepening the long-standing partnerships that have existed between our nations,” President Kenyatta said.
He stated that Africa offers unparalleled investment opportunities, saying the continent holds more than 30 percent of the global reserves of natural resources, has some of the world’s fastest growing economies, a fast expanding middle class and untapped consumer potential.
Kenyatta also launched Kenya’s first Green Bond at the London Stock Exchange. Green bonds are designated bonds intended to encourage sustainability and to support climate-related or other types of special environmental projects.
Speaking at the launch, the President urged UK investors to use Kenya as a gateway to investing in Africa. “Kenya is one of the top ten fastest growing economies on the continent and also one of the most pro-business nations in Africa,” he said.
The $40 million(over four billion Kenya shillings) bond by Nairobi-based property developer Acorn Holdings that started trading today at the LSE after its launch by the President becomes the first Kenya shilling denominated corporate green bond to be listed in the United Kingdom.
Presidents Yoweri Museveni of Uganda, Sisi of Egypt, Buhari of Nigeria, Akufo-Addo of Ghana and Kagame of Rwanda among others are some of the attendees at the summit hosted by British Prime Minister Boris Johnson.