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Govt to allow foreign firms to retain full ownership

10 November 2015, 08:06

Nairobi - The government plans to reform company law in order to allow foreign firms to establish local branches that can own 100 percent, a senior official said on Monday.

Cabinet Secretary for Industrialization and Enterprise Development Adan Mohamed said during a business forum in Nairobi that Kenya recognizes the role that foreign capital plays in the economic development of the country and will create better environment for foreign investment.

President Uhuru Kenyatta in September signed into law the Companies Act. The new law, which is yet to be operationalized, is expected to overhaul company registration procedures that have been place in the past 50 years.

Read Also: Rwanda to allow derivatives trading, offer more incentives for foreign firms soon

The new law stipulates, however, that the foreign companies that want to establish branches in Kenya need to cede 30 percent ownership to Kenyans.

"We need foreign capital and expertise in order to create employment opportunities," said Mohamed. "We will reform the law so that we send the message to the international community that Kenya is a safe investment destination."

The CS said that new law contains 1,000 new provisions that will make it easier for companies to operate in Kenya. He noted that foreign ownership of companies is only restricted in a few select industries such as in mining sector.

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- Xinhua


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