The Star (Nairobi)

17 March 2014

Kenya: Chamas Told to Invest in Agriculture Projects

INVESTMENT groups have been urged to venture into agribusiness as a way of spreading their risks and to create more jobs.

Chief executive officer of deposit taking microfinance Rafiki Daniel Mavindu said that the groups, popularly known as chamas, control assets worth over Sh 300billion in the country, most of which is in real estate.

Speaking on Saturday at a symposium on investing in agriculture, Mavindu said diverting some of the funds controlled by investment groups into agriculture would support job creation in the country.

"Chamas can invest in agribusiness as a way of diversification from traditional real estate focus and create employment to many youths across the country," said Mavindu.

He said Rafiki Microfinance bank has been able to support over 87,000 dairy farmers out of the 1.8 million small holder dairy farmers across the nation.

Mavindu said there is need to renew focus on youth unemployment which stands at 64 per cent with estimated unemployment rate standing at 40 per cent.

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