The Star (Nairobi)

Kenya on the Verge of a Boom - Renaissance

Kenya is among sub-Saharan Africa economies on the verge of accelerated growth rates projected to outdo other regions of the world for the next 40 years, a survey by Renaissance Capital shows.

The findings by the investment bank and research company are contained in a book titled "The Fastest Billion" which predicts an African economic revolution similar to the growth witnessed in Asian countries in the 1970's.

Renaissance Capital's global chief economist Charles Robertson said the expected African economic boom will be driven by a combination of educated youth, more stable political organisation and search for growth markets by investors fleeing developed countries where returns are low.

"The perception that Africa is a continent place plagued by ethnic conflict, corrupt dictatorships, religious strife, war and famine is changing to the advantage of stable African states, "said Robertson.

Robertson is the lead author of the book, alongside Renaissance Capital Head of Research for Sub-Saharan Africa, Nothando Ndebele, and sub-Saharan Africa Economist, Yvonne Mhango.

Robertson, said Kenya only needs to improve its agricultural production and ensure social stability and security for its economy to attract rapid foreign direct investments.

According to the book, the sub-Saharan region, Kenya included, have realised the mistake of investing in policies that did not include social aspects leading to low acceptance and use of such policies for wealth creation.

Speaking at the book's a pre-launch event in Nairobi yesterday, economist David Ndii said the world is looking at Africa as the last frontier of investment due to its huge growth potential, but only the organised democracies will benefit.

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