Treasury, October 6, 2015: By Joseph Kipkoech
The shilling has strengthened with support by rising yields on government securities and dollar sales by tea agencies paying to farmers.
At 8.42 am on Friday last week, banks quoted the shilling at 104.15/25 to the dollar, compared with Thursday’s close of 104.40/50.
Traders say a shortage of shilling liquidity has supported the shilling and kept overnight lending rate high at around 27 per cent this week up from 13 per cent in early September.

Cabinet Secretaries and governors can now enjoy up to Kshs.40 million mortgage loans from a Kshs.1 billion revolving fund that will also serve top state officers.
Other senior state officers will be allowed to borrow between Kshs.25 million and Kshs.35 million depending on one’s rank.
National Treasury Cabinet Secretary Mr. Henry Rotich said the scheme became effective last month. The top officers allowed to borrow up to Kshs.40 million include governors, Cabinet Secretaries, the Chief of the Kenya Defence Forces and the Secretary to the Cabinet.

The Central Bank of Kenya (CBK) has for the third time retained monetary policy rate at 11.5 per cent to keep inflation in check at a time of relative exchange rate stability.
The Monetary Policy Committee (MPC) – the independent rate – setting organ affiliated to the CBK said overall inflation was trending towards the five per cent target.
The MPC said the Kshs.655 billion ($6.2 billion) worth of forex reserves and the Kshs.65 billion ($610.7 million) precautionary facility from the International Monetary Fund (IMF) were adequate cushions against volatility in the value of the shilling.

Treasury, October 6, 2015: By Joseph Kipkoech
The Central Bank of Kenya (CBK) seeks to weed out dealers manipulating markets in an effort to stem volatility of the shilling.
The CBK governor, Dr Patrick Njoroge, said financial institutions ought to adhere to rules on forex trading and increase oversight on dealers to eliminate market indiscipline.

Central Bank of Kenya (CBK) Governor Dr. Patrick Njoroge has asked lenders to shore up their core capital to enable them grab a share of the lucrative infrastructure financing business.
Boosting the respective capital bases would the lenders’ ability to stave off competition from foreign finance providers.  “Given the considerable financial outlays involved in infrastructure projects, commercial banks would need to enhance their capital base to participate in Public Private Partnerships while remaining compliant with regulatory requirements”, Dr. Njoroge said.

The shilling strengthened on Friday last week, helped by dollar inflows from offshore investors interested in buying government securities.
Commercial banks quoted the shilling at 105.10/20 to the dollar, compared with Thursday’s close of 105.55/65.
A senior trader said: “The shilling strengthened on the interest rates.  The interbank rate is very tight.  I think the Treasury bill is beginning to attract offshore interest now, so the market is seeing some flows”.

Treasury, October 6, 2015: By Joseph Kipkoech
The Central Bank of Kenya (CBK) has directed commercial banks to streamline the supply of coins as it warned retail outlets against giving customers alternative goods as change instead of coins.
The bank, which regulates issuing of currency, said the practice of offering shoppers airtime, matchboxes and sweets for low-value change has become a concern.
Retailers denying customers the possibility of obtaining their change in currency or opportunity to agree on any other form of settlement were violating the law, the CBK said last week on Friday.

Lower growth rates across East Africa and turmoil in South Sudan will have an adverse effect on performance of Kenyan banks, the International Monetary Fund (IMF) has said.
The Fund, which has revised Kenya’s economic growth from 6.9 per cent to 6.5 per cent, says cross-border activities have exposed local lenders to economic downturn across the region.
 “In the event of economic distress in Eat Africa, in particular South Sudan, the IMF noted that cross-border activities of Kenyan banks could be adversely affected”, said a statement by the Fund.

Treasury, September 28, 2015: By Joseph Kipkoech

The government of the Kingdom of Belgium has granted to Kenya Kshs.1.2 billion in form of loans to support Kajiado Rural Water Supply Project.

The National Treasury Cabinet Secretary Mr. Henry Rotich said the project once completed will serve over 100,000 residents of Kajiado County with clean water for domestic use and livestock.

“The government of the Kingdom of Belgium will also support firefighting equipment project for Nairobi City County, Ithanga Water Supply project, Vihiga Water Supply project, Ruaka Water Supply project, phase III of e-Government connectivity project and Nanyuki District Hospital,” Mr. Rotich said.

Treasury, October 6, 2015: By Joseph Kipkoech
The Capital Markets Authority (CMA) has been feted as the most innovative capital markets regulator in Africa by New York-based Africa Investor.
The Pan-African awards, launched in 2007, recognized best performing stock exchanges, listed companies, investment banks, research teams, regulators, socially responsible companies and sovereign wealth and pension fund investors.

The Central Bank of Kenya (CBK) will release this week the details of the planned release of the new currency. CBK Governor Dr. Patrick Njoroge said on the sidelines of the 4th Kenya Bankers Association Annual Banking Research Conference without divulging further details.
The National Treasury Cabinet Secretary Mr. Henry Rotich had said that the launch of the new currency had been set in motion and was nearing completion.

DSC 4085Henry Rotich , National Treasury Cabinet Secretary (Centre) and Peter De Crem, the Belgium State Secretary for Foreign Trade append their signatures to documents today, Monday, September 28, 2015 during the Signing of Credit Agreement worth  Sh 1. 2 billion between Governments of Kenya and Belgium to support Kajiado Rural Water Supply Project. The project on completion is expected to enhance delivery of clean water to the people of Kajiado County. Looking on left is the Ambassador of the Kingdom of Belgium to Kenya Roxane de Bilderling.

The 2010 constitution requires public participation in key decision-making processes. However, progress towards this goal has been slow. Participation is costly and difficult to manage, especially in a country that is large and ethnically diverse.
Recently, the Kenyan government organized a conference on County Own Source Revenue Enhancement which was held at Great Rift Valley Lodge and Golf Resort, Naivasha.

Kenya’s quest to grow its agricultural sector has received a major boost after Poland extended a Kshs.10.5 billion soft loan for procurement of equipment.
National Treasury Cabinet Secretary Mr. Henry Rotich said the concessionary loan would be used to obtain equipment for meat and milk processing, embryo transfer, veterinary, grain storage silos, horticulture and mobile grain dryers from Poland.
The loan, which attracts 0.7 per cent interest, has a five-year grace period and will be paid over 25 years.

DSC 3356Deputy President William Ruto (Left) and National Treasury Cabinet Secretary, Henry Rotich follow proceedings on Wednesday, September 23, 2015 when the Deputy President officially opened the National Conference on County Own Source Revenue Enhancement at Great Rift Valley Lodge and Golf Resort in Naivasha.The conference which was aimed at coming up a policy document to guide County Governments was organized by the National Treasury on behalf of the Intergovernmental Budget and Economic Council (IBEC) in collaboration with: UNDP, IMF, and World Bank.

Treasury, October 2, 2015: By Joseph Kipkoech
Financial services and utility companies still holding onto unclaimed assets face penalties, the Unclaimed Financial Assets Authority (UFAA) has warned.
Bankers, insurers, brokerage firms, pension funds and utilities including mobile money service providers are under Unclaimed Financial Assets Act 2011 required to surrender such dormant assets by November every year.
The Chief Executive Officer Ms Kellen Kariuki spoke during the launch of a month-long public awareness campaign in partnership with Kenya Bankers Association.

Banks struggled to meet the cash reserve ratio (CRR) requirement as firms paid taxes, recording a deficit of nearly Kshs.10 billion as the financial markets tightened.
For the week ending September 16, the banks had a deficit of Kshs.9.67 billion in relation to the CRR – the fraction of deposits put at the Central Bank of Kenya (CBK) without earning interest – against the requirement of 5.25 per cent or Kshs.130.7 billion.

Kenya’s new county governments need to do more to win the confidence and support of their communities.  This is important not just to strengthen the system of devolved government, but also to increase support for local taxes.
Yet so far, few counties have developed effective communication participation strategies.  The need to communicate and ensure meaningful political participation is not just a moral imperative for county governments, but also a constitutional requirement.

cbkThe Central Bank of Kenya (CBK), will get more powers to deal with rogue financial institutions and enhance its supervisory role under new proposed legislation.
National Treasury Cabinet Secretary, Mr. Henry Rotich, said the proposed law approved by the Cabinet two weeks ago, will enable the regulator play a more proactive role.

Kenya’s one-stop border trade clearance network is 80 per cent complete with 18 out the 20 National Electronic Single Window System modules already in place while the system will be fully functional by June 2016, Kenya Trade Network Agency has said.
The functional modules include unique consignment reference, arrival report, bay plan submission, outbound process, air manifest and permits, and import declaration form.
Others are cargo release module, payments, availability of attachments, reports, user admin, dynamic risk management module, security bonds and sea manifest.