Stanbic Bank and Stanbic Kenya Foundation have signed a Memorandum of Understanding with the Kenyan Ministry of Industrialization, Trade, and Enterprise Development to support the country’s trade and industrialization agenda, as well as the MSMEs market.
This decision comes as Kenya engages in trade talks with various partners to prioritize industrialization as a key Big 4 agenda item, despite the fact that the country is still recovering from the effects of the global COVID 19 pandemic.
“SMEs play a vital role in driving economic growth and development and contribute to over 36% of the GDP. We must therefore support them through various intervention programmes that allow them to reach their full potential. One of the government’s key focuses is to partner with able players, especially in the private sector to achieve this.” Betty Maina, Cabinet Secretary for Industrialization, Trade and Enterprise Development,
Both the Ministry, the bank, and the Foundation have defined sub-sectors as potential areas of cooperation as part of the planned initiatives outlined in the MoU. This includes supporting the government’s trade agreements, MSMEs’ capacity building and business growth, access to capital, and market access. A total of 50,000 trainees and an additional 1000 trainers of trainers (TOT) are expected to benefit from the capacity-building program.
“Through the various government agencies, we are looking at implementing different interventions to support MSMEs. These include capacity building, entrepreneurial training programs, and provision of targeted infrastructure support to the Biashara Centres. Doing so will not only empower the enterprises to take their businesses to the next level, but it will also contribute to the larger agenda of driving Kenya’s economic growth.” Pauline Mbayah, the Head of Stanbic Kenya Foundation
Early this year, the bank teamed up with Microsoft Kenya and the Ministry of Industrialization, Trade, and Enterprise Development to introduce a digital upskilling program for people who lost their employment as a result of the COVID-19 economic downturn.
The program is also aimed at job seekers and entrepreneurs who want to upskill themselves by taking advantage of the digital revolution.
Stanbic has been forming alliances with key private and public sector stakeholders to help drive investments that are in line with the Big 4 Agenda. Investments in health, manufacturing, trade, agriculture, and affordable housing are among them.
“As a bank, we are focused on offering value beyond financial services. Staying true to our purpose of driving Kenya’s economic growth, we are also dedicated to the development of the country’s social pillars by leveraging on our established networks, available resources, and strategic partnerships to inject investments into key sectors that align with the governments larger Big 4 Agenda.“ Charles Mudiwa, Chief Executive Stanbic Bank Kenya.
Stanbic has invested in the Kenya Mortgage Refinance Company (KMRC) in collaboration with the government as part of the bank’s affordable housing pillar to help Kenyans get access to affordable home loans.
Stanbic Bank also organized East Africa’s first green bond deal, raising KSh 4.62 billion for the construction of 5,000 environmentally sustainable and affordable student housing units in Nairobi and its environs.