The performance of the global economy continues to be defined by the COVID-19 pandemic with the war in Ukraine worsening the outlook for the world economy and Africa. For Africa ,the war in Ukraine will exacerbate food insecurity, increase fuel and food production costs, and push up the cost of living. Key global risks include the emergence of new COVID-19 variants which could prolong the pandemic and induce renewed economic and supply chain disruptions, energy price volatility, and high uncertainty around inflation and policy paths.
To reach the United Nations’ 17 Sustainable Development Goals (SDGs) by 2030, emerging economies require US $3.3 to $4.5 trillion per year in funding, but they face an estimated annual shortfall of US $2.5 trillion.
Kenya’s progress on inclusive financial sector development over the past five years places Kenya at the front of the curve relative to its peers. But beneath its headline success story, falling financial health and growing disparities in financial usage point to underlying challenges that compromise the ability of financial inclusion to deliver on its promise for inclusive and sustainable growth.
FSD Kenya in partnership with the Kenya National Bureau of Statistics and the Central Bank of Kenya and FSD Kenya ran a survey of micro businesses (MSEs) to track the impacts of COVID-19 on this population. Based on a sample of microbusinesses drawn from the FinAccess 2019 household survey, the survey tracked key metrics such as business revenue, customer flow, employment, use of finance and challenges faced by MSEs between February 2020 (before the pandemic) and July 2021.
In Kenya, divergence trends continue with macroeconomic resilience masking sustained inequalities and divergence in recovery. On one hand, inflation remains reasonable; export performance has been relatively strong (especially relative to other African countries); diaspora remittances have been robust; and the mobile money sector has demonstrated sustained resilience and growth.
Rather than a ‘cost’ to the state, social protection is an essential component of any sustainable, national economic growth strategy. Most of the world’s successful economies are significant investors in social protection, with spending across the OECD averaging 12 per cent of GDP.
FSD Kenya implemented a four-year pilot graduation project targeting beneficiaries of the Hunger Safety Net Programme (HSNP) in Laisamis Sub County (Laisamis, Gudas, Logologo, Korr, Merille, Irrir), which provides a bi-monthly cash transfer of Ksh 5,400 (about US$ 54).