PRES KENYATTA INVITES QATARI INVESTMENT IN KENYA’S ENERGY SECTOR

DOHA (QATAR), April 23– Kenyan President Uhuru Kenyatta has invited Qatari investors to partner with the Jubilee Government in the exploration of oil and the generation of natural gas.

Noting Qatar’s demonstrated expertise in the energy sector, President Kenyatta said cooperation between the two countries would accelerate Kenya’s efforts in achieving its energy targets.

“I encourage Qatari entities in the energy sector to participate in the Kenyan energy sector where substantial returns and mutual benefits can be expected,” President Kenyatta said.

He added: “Kenya is the door to the East African region. Cooperation with Qatar in the energy sector will not only benefit Kenya but also our neighbours in the region by opening the region to diverse investments.”

President Kenyatta spoke during a meeting with Qatari Energy and Industry Minister, Mohamed Saleh Al Sada in Doha.

The President said the Jubilee Government has prioritized the provision of energy as a key driver of the growth envisaged in Vision 2030 and has develop a medium term strategy for the production of 5000 MW of power by 2016 targeting a rich mix of energy sources among which green energy is prominent.

To complement the Government’s efforts, the President said a framework for private sector participation in generation of electricity had been introduced.

“Six independent power producers have already been licensed to address the shortfall in our energy production, and to enhance our production – as we must if we are to meet the demands of the future,” the President said.

The Head of State said Kenya seeks the support of Qatar in energy generation –especially in the supply of petroleum oil and LNG gas –to address the energy deficit the country now faces.

He said Kenya offered immense investment opportunities in the energy sector; in oil and gas exploration and development; and in power generation from gas, coal, hydro and geothermal power.

The President noted that Kenya Pipeline had already signed a Non-Disclosure Agreement with Qatar Gas to start negotiation for the supply of 1 million metric tonnes per annum of LNG to Kenya to power the 700-megawatt gas plant in the port city of Mombasa.

On his part, Qatari Energy and Industry Minister Saleh Al Sada said Qatar was keen on working with Kenya in energy and other sectors of mutual benefit given the conducive business environment created by President Kenyatta’s leadership.

The Qatari Energy and Industry Minister said that for the one year he has been in office, President Kenyatta had proved to be a solid pillar for development not only for Kenya but also for the East African region and beyond.

President Kenyatta is the current chair of the East African Community.

At another meeting with the the Managing Director and Chief Executive Officer of Qatar Investment Authority/Qatar Holdings, Ahmad Mohamed Al Sayed, President Kenyatta encouraged the Qatari business community to take advantage of the investment opportunity in Kenya in the area of infrastructure, transport and communication.

The President said Africa is the new frontier in the investment and Kenya is the gateway.

Al Sayed indicated that the Qatari business community was keen to establish joint ventures with its Kenyan counterparts.

He said that once Kenya and Qatar sign an agreement on avoidance of double taxation and prevention of fiscal evasion with respect to taxes on income tomorrow, the foundation for joint business ventures will have been firmly laid down. Al Sayed said Qatar considered Kenya as its strategic link to the African market.

The meetings were attended by Cabinet Secretaries, Amb. Amina Mohamed of Foreign Affairs and International Trade, Davis Chirchir of Energy, Adan Mohamed of Industrialization and Enterprise, and Eng. Michael Kamau of Transport and Infrastructure.

Later, President Kenyatta was conducted on an extensive tour of both the current port and the new port in Doha, which is under construction to see the Qatar ports authority’s effective management of maritime installations.

SOURCE: KBC

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