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Kenya calls for reforms and more say in global lending institutions

 President Ruto and his Mozambique and Rwanda counterparts Filipe Nyusi and Paul Kagame during the Africa CEO Forum in Kigali, Rwanda on Friday. [PCS, Standard]

Kenya has called for reforms of international financing institutions, advocating for a more inclusive approach. 

President William Ruto told the Presidential Conversation Session at the Africa CEO Forum 2024 in Kigali, Rwanda, that there was need to democratise the boards of multilateral development banks, ensuring that all members have an equal say in their management. 

Ruto said the current financial system was unfair as it neglected the interests of developing countries. 

He said the reforms he wishes to see would enable underserved countries to advocate for mutually beneficial outcomes, such as the allocation of additional resources for concessional loans. 

"Concessional loans have many benefits: they are long-term and can be leveraged by the private sector to enhance those resources," he said. 

This, he said, would help pull many countries out of debt distress and give them an opportunity to pursue their development goals. 

The president noted that there was need to allocate resources tailored at addressing challenges posed by climate change, to advance global climate action objectives noting that African countries are facing the unfortunate reality of having to redirect funds originally designated for social amenities towards climate-related initiatives. 

Ruto said Africa must prioritise value addition and stop raw material exports so as to enhance exports as a percentage of GDP. 

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