New policy to help youth get state contracts in Kenya

New policiesThe Kenyan Government has launched a new policy that will see a tenth of the total value of tenders awarded to youth run businesses. The Ministry of Finance has set aside Sh105 billion that will be rolled out in 47counties in two weeks after being launched in Nairobi last week. For some time now, young entrepreneurs have been alienated against multinational firms and moneyed local for government contracts, they can finally claim a share of the piece. The new policy shall soon see empowerment of youth entrepreneurship.

[sws_blue_box box_size=”610″]Over Sh100 billion will go to companies run by the youth, between 60 and 70 percent of the total budget will go to procurement. This means that young entrepreneurs will be entitled to between Sh80million to Sh105billion out of 1.45 trillion budget.[/sws_blue_box]

The Minister of Finance is empowered to public procurement and Disposal Act in prescribing preferences and reservations for disadvantaged groups. Njeru Githae, the Finance Minister, stated to the media that he would gazette a new law to compel ministries to ensure that they indulge the youth entrepreneurs in the performance contracts in all government departments.

The Finance Minister and Attorney General were urged by the President to remove all legal bottlenecks and restrictions that have marred the implementation of the policy adopted more than five years ago, lowering the cost of biding documents and reducing bonds.

Celestine Otunga, Director of Public Procurement at the Finance Ministry said that youth entrepreneurs are interested in supplying goods, works and services. She added that the government should not be insolvent, in receivership, or bankrupt. Furthermore she added that those already barred from participating needed to register. Beneficiaries of the scheme will be between 18 and 35 years and will be reviewed every five years.

During the launch, about 300 youth owned enterprises had registered with the Treasury, these enterprises are required to provide details of their preferred type of business, business turnover and profile of their staff.

Those interested will be required to have:

  • National identity card or a passport
  • Business registration certificate or a certificate of incorporation
  • A personal identification number (PIN) or a Value added tax (VAT) certificate

Youth entrepreneurship has been broken down into several categories, including agribusiness, manufacturing, construction, retail, wholesale, and professional services. Others will fall under hospitality, event organizers, information and communication technology and trade.

The enterprises will be required to declare the nominal and issue capital of the registered company. Details being sought will include the company’s director’s nationality and their stake in the company. Any enterprise that gives false information will be disqualified and risk prosecution.

The tender security is not needed. All they need is to sign a tender declaration form. Five commercial banks and micro-finance institutions, Rafiki deposit micro-finance, Ecobank, Family Bank, Biashara Factors Limited and Jamii Bora have set their eyes on the scheme and lining up customized products to tap into the project.

Financial institutions are offering products like unsecured bid bonds, local purchase order (LPO) financing, invoice and cheque discounts. The Youth Enterprise Development Fund has also set aside money to fund enterprises prequalified to supply government with goods or services.

Image courtesy: FreeDigitalPhotos.net

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