It will now be mandatory for International ICT companies to surrender 30 percent of their shareholding following a new directive by the government
The Ministry of Information and Communication Technology, in a Gazette notice pointed out that the new requirement is part of a wider plan to encourage Kenyans to participate in the ICT and Science and Technology sector through equity participation.
“It is the policy that only companies with at least 30 per cent substantive Kenyan ownership, either corporate or individual will be licensed to provide ICT services. For purposes of this rule, companies without majority Kenyan ownership will not be considered Kenyan, and may thus not be calculated as part of the 30 per cent Kenyan ownership calculus,” says the ministry in a gazette notice.
The Gazette notice further continues that Licensees will have three years to meet the local equity ownership threshold.
“They may apply to the Cabinet Secretary for a one-year extension with appropriate acceptable justification.”
According to the Principal Secretary in the ministry of ICT, Jerome Ochieng, the move will enable Kenyans to actively participate in the technology sector.
The National ICT policy was last reviewed in 2006. Since then, the sector has experienced rapid technological advancement, changes to the legal and administrative framework, and many emerging issues.
The Cabinet Secretary Ministry of ICT Joe Mucheru says the review is inspired by the need to align the policy with the new constitutional dispensation, and vision 2030.
Going forward he said the Government will concentrate on speeding up the development of new generation mobile, high-speed, secure and ubiquitous ICT infrastructure, developing a modern technology-enabled industrial system, implementing the national big data strategy, and enhancing national cyber-security.
By harnessing the power of ICTs, private and state-owned enterprises are expected to improve their sourcing, sales, and logistics systems; streamline operations, track market trends and boost their marketing, research, and innovation capabilities.
“Enterprise operations will become more efficient, translating into productivity gains and the creation of new markets for innovative products and services. The strategies and action plans developed as a result of this policy will continue to bring about the rapid transformation of Kenya.”
Kenyan Business Feed is the top Kenyan Business Blog. We share news from Kenya and across the region. To contact us with any alert, please email us to [email protected]