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Study: Kenya holds Sh4 trillion worth of opportunities in sustainable development

By Fredrick Obura | January 21st 2020

Kenya holds Sh4 trillion worth of opportunities in sustainable development, a new study by Standard Chartered now reveals.

The Standard Chartered sustainable development group investment map reveals an almost USD10 trillion opportunity for private-sector investors across all emerging markets to help achieve the UN’s Sustainable Development Goals (SDGs).

The study identifies opportunities for the private sector to contribute to clean water and sanitation, affordable and clean energy and industry, innovation and infrastructure between now and 2030 across emerging markets.

High-powered projects
“The opportunity for the private sector to improve the lives of Kenyans is substantial,” the study says. Currently, 56 per cent of Kenyans lack access to clean water and sanitation, while 36 per cent have no access to electricity, and the country’s digital access rate – a combination of mobile phone subscription rates and internet connectivity - stands at 34 per cent.

The greatest opportunity in Kenya is found in achieving and maintaining universal access to electricity (a key SDG 7 indicator), representing Sh1.5 trillion private-sector opportunity. This takes into account the proportion of the Kenyan population currently without electricity access, projected population growth, and the growing demand for power as the economy develops.

For SDG 9, which encourages improvement in industry, innovation, and infrastructure, Opportunity2030 highlights private-sector investment opportunities in transport and improving digital access. Securing full digital adoption in Kenya – measured by a combination of mobile phone subscription rates and internet connectivity levels – would require the private-sector investment of around Sh1.3 trillion. To significantly improve Kenya’s transport infrastructure by 2030 indicates a Sh918 billion investment opportunity for the private sector.

The opportunity in the water sector is smaller but still significant. Around 56 per cent of Kenya’s population still do not have access to clean water and sanitation facilities and closing this gap by 2030 will require significant investment, with an opportunity for the private sector to provide around Sh232 billion of the funding.

“The UN Sustainable Development Goals are amongst the most ambitious projects humanity has ever attempted. For the goals to be met, the private sector must play a central role in deploying capital to get projects off the ground. With one of the fastest-growing economies in Sub-Saharan Africa, Kenya is a promising country for investment.

Opportunity2030 provides an important map of the SDG opportunities for private sector investors looking to invest with impact and improve the lives of millions of Kenyans over the next decade,” said Kariuki Ngari, CEO at Standard Chartered.

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