President Kibaki
of Kenya “’ appeal
for funding for energy
Nairobi, Kenya — ESI-AFRICA.COM — 05 October 2011 – President Kibaki has appealed to Kenyan banks, pension funds and development financiers to fund energy projects in the country.

In doing so, he told his Finance and Energy ministries to prepare a comprehensive policy guide on how to tap capital from pension funds, local banks and other development partners.
“I challenge the local banks, pension funds and development financiers to form a consortium to fund energy projects in the country. Let us emulate economies that are supported by primary capital,” he said.

The Head of State made the remarks when he opened the second National Energy Conference at the Kenyatta International Conference Centre here.

The Kenyan private sector has been calling for sovereign guarantees, but the government has not heeded the call, resulting in delays in implementing projects that would have added 252 megawatts (MW) to the national grid.

The President, however, told the financiers to relax their stringent lending terms, particularly payment of security to underwrite loan risks. This, he said, would enable private sector players to implement more energy projects to cover for the energy deficit experienced in the country due to rising power demand.

He went on to say that the country’s investment climate was highly rated by international institutions, and was further boosted by the passing of the new constitution that laid a firm political and economic ground for investors.

The President said among the projects that required urgent implementation was the old pipeline from Mombasa to Nairobi, which had a lifespan of 25 years, but had served the country for 33 years.

He pointed out that through the rural electrification programme, 6,700 public facilities had been connected to electricity since 2008, which included schools, health centres and market places.