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IMF chief hails local economic growth

07 January 2014, 16:02

Mombasa - Visiting International Monetary Fund (IMF) Managing Director, Christine Largarde, has called on the country to complete devolution plans, close infrastructure gaps and continue with regional integration.

Largarde was speaking in a meeting with Private Sector members where she commended Kenya on the increased economic growth which stood at more than 5 percent in 2013.

“Kenya’s economic gains over the past few years have been nothing short of remarkable. Coming on the heels of a delicate political transition, growth remains robust—at more than 5 percent in 2013,” said Largarde.

She lauded the country’s reforms saying that the set of “bold economic reforms” had laid the foundations to lift the economy to middle-income status within the next decade if Kenya maintains the current momentum.

She however cautioned Kenya and the Sub-Saharan region as a whole against complacency saying that achievements need to be deepened and broadened, so the economy could be made even more resilient, and the benefits of growth could be even more widely shared among all the Kenyan people.

The IMF boss bemoaned the unacceptably high poverty index in Africa as a continent. She said that Africa can and must grow faster to address pressing social problems, and provide jobs for its young and growing population.

“Poverty remains unacceptably high, and progress toward the Millennium Development Goals remains too slow,” she said.

The IMF boss, who termed Kenya as a frontier economy, is in the country for three days and has held talks with officials of the national treasury and had dinner with President Uhuru Kenyatta.

The IMF has provided financial support to Kenya through Extended Credit Facility to deal with adverse shocks.

The Bretton Woods institution’s Board gave its seal of approval for the successful completion of the programme a few weeks ago.

– CAJ News


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