International Monetary Fund (IMF) Managing Director Kristalina Georgieva is in Kenya and met President William Ruto at State House in Nairobi Wednesday.
According to Georgieva, Kenya is on the right path for her economic recovery plans at a time when the Kenya National Bureau of Statistics (KNBS) released its 2022 economic survey, painting a gloomy picture of what the ordinary Kenyan is experiencing to earn a living.
She exuded confidence in the government’s economic recovery program, particularly in the areas of agriculture.
According to KNBS, agriculture was the worst-hit economic indicator in its 2022 survey, posting dismal performance from negative 0.3 percent in 2021 to negative 1.9 percent.
“Estimated maize production decreased from 36.7 million bags in 2021 to 34.3 million bags in 2022. Similarly, tea production decreased from 537.8 thousand tonnes in 2021 to 535.0 thousand tonnes in 2022 on account of depressed rainfall in tea growing areas,” KNBS states.
The sector’s contribution to GDP dropped to 21.2 percent from 21.5 percent in 2021.
Another area which IMF said the country has well prioritised is Micro and Small Enterprises (MSESs) that offer quick turnaround results.
Ms Georgieva said the government’s dynamism of investment, prudent fiscal measures and transparency in governance have set the country on the path of success.
“We commend you for what you are doing on your fiscal measures. The country is certainly headed in the right direction,” she said.
She said IMF is ready to support the government to fast-track the country’s economic recovery programs.
The President said the government has cut down on new projects and stopped subsidy programs that were draining the country’s resources.
He said the government has deliberately invested in agriculture and MSESs to create opportunities, income and wealth for as many Kenyans as possible in line with the Bottom-Up Economic Transformation Agenda.
“We commit to stay the course, especially on fiscal discipline and giving priority to projects that will have circulation of money,” he said.
In April, IMF revised Kenya’s economic growth projection for 2023 upwards from 5.1 percent as forecasted in October last year to 5.3 percent, in its World Economic Outlook.