NAIROBI – The State Department of Diaspora Affairs will host the Second Diaspora Investment Conference on December 13-15 in Nairobi.
The event, which will he held at the Kenyatta International Convention Center, will seek to foster dialogue and collaboration among the government, the Diaspora, and the private sector with a focus on investment, the State Department of Diaspora Affairs says.
“The conference aims to highlight and present investment opportunities across various sectors of the economy to members of the Diaspora, while engaging in discussions regarding the legal and regulatory framework related to diaspora investments,” the department says in the announcement of the event.
It further adds that the conference seeks to facilitate networking and collaboration among different stakeholders, including fostering connections between members of the Diaspora, national and county governments, and local businesses.
The Kenya Kwanza Administration has been urging Kenyans living abroad to invest back home.
For instance, during Deputy President Rigathi Gachagua’s trip to Brussels for the EU gateway Forum in October, he urged Kenyans in diaspora to invest in President William Ruto’s pet project, affordable housing as well as Treasury bonds and bills.
During a meeting with Kenyans living in Belgium on October 24, DP Rigathi said the government had streamlined the process for them to buy the financial instruments, making it more convenient and profitable for them.
“The safest way to invest your money in Kenya is through government bonds and bills. They are the most secure means of investing back home because they are backed by the government’s guarantee, and they offer very competitive interest rates,” he said.
By investing in these instruments, he said, Kenyan expatriates can earn interest that is equivalent to what the government pays to foreign lenders for their funds.
Earlier in August, President Ruto urged Kenyans in Mozambique to stay united and invest back home, including through the housing project and government securities.
In April, the President also urged Kenyans in Rwanda to invest back home, noting that the development of the country depends not only on taxes and loans but also on investments that create jobs for Kenyans.
In July, Diaspora Principal Secretary Roseline Njogu urged Kenyans in diaspora to invest in affordable housing back home.
Njogu said the government is committed to working with Kenyans abroad to invest in viable projects.
She spoke in Kitsuru during the launch of Kitsuru Amani Gardens housing project built by 300 Kenyans living abroad through the Jambo Diaspora Investment Group.
Diaspora remittances in the first months of 2023 reduces by three per cent, with Kenyans living abroad sending back Sh185.9 billion compared to Sh191.9 billion the same last year, according to CBK statistics.
This was attributed the rise in high cost of living in the key areas where Kenyans live such as Europe and the US.
However, the remittances for June increased by Sh2.9 billion to Sh49.1 billion from the Sh46.2 billion sent in May, a 6.3 per cent increase.
The cumulative inflows for the 12 months to June remained steady atSh569.8 billion compared to Sh569.2 billion in a similar period in 2022, an increase of 0.1 per cent.
“The remittance inflows continue to support the current account and the foreign exchange market,” CBK said in its weekly bulletin released on Friday.
The US remains the largest source of remittances to Kenya, accounting for 54 per cent as of June 2023.