Over five State-owned enterprises set for listing at the NSE — President Ruto

The government is prepare for listing at the Nairobi Securities Exchange (NSE) between five and 10 State-owned enterprises in the next 12 months.

President William Ruto said the move is part of tapping the capital raising opportunities from the securities markets even as his government seeks to open wealth creation avenues for millions of Kenyans.

The NSE has been through a listing drought since 2018 when the Bank of Kigali listed on the Kenyan bourse by an introduction and 2014 when the NSE went public itself.

Dr Ruto’s announcement comes seven years since the government in 2015 announced plans to sell 51 percent shares in each of the ailing millers Nzoia, South Nyanza, Chemelil, Muhoroni and Miwani but little progress has been made.

Earlier, the privatisation commission said it plans to sell the millers to strategic investors with a track record of managing sugar companies.

While urging private sector players to also take advantage of the NSE to raise funding for growth, Dr Ruto offered his government support to help unleash their potential.

“The government is embarking on reviewing the Privatisation Act to create a legal framework that will ease the structure of listing for companies,” said the President.

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I have instructed the relevant parties to commence the review of the Privatization Act with a view to repealing it and replacing it with a more facilitative framework that will accelerate privatizations, Dr Ruto added.

The planned changes in the law are part of his new administration’s move to equalize and democratize opportunities for wealth acquisition for all Kenyans, he said.

At the moment, Credit Bank Ltd and milk products maker Bio Food Products are preparing to list at the NSE.

“I encourage the private sector companies to work together with Capital Markets Authority and the NSE to list. For those that are reluctant to list because of issues around tax, we will work together with them to deal with any impediments,” Dr Ruto explained.

The President expressed commitment to revamping the growth of capital markets as a shared agenda for his government and the private sector.

Dr Ruto’s call to list more State-owned firms comes at a time the International Monetary Fund has been pushing for reforms in the enterprises to ease the burden on the government.

Reforms on some listed State-owned enterprises such as Kenya Airways and Kenya Power have been set as conditions for advancing a $2.34 billion three-year financing package for Kenya currently being rolled out.

The national flag carrier reported a Kes9.8 billion loss in the six months to June, a better performance than the Kes11.48 billion loss it recorded in the same period in 2021.

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