Doing business in Kenya: updates regarding COVID-19
The outbreak of COVID-19 has consequences for entrepreneurs doing business in or with Kenya. We provide an overview of useful information intended for everyone involved with agribusiness in Kenya. The agriculture team of the Netherlands embassy can answer further questions via firstname.lastname@example.org.
We aim to continue our regular work as much as possible.
Update 10 June 2020
- On the 6th of June 2020 President Uhuru Kenyatta announced in his Presidential Address:
- A change of the curfew hours. New curfew from 21:00 to 04:00.
- Travel restrictions in and out of Nairobi metropolitan area extended until 05/07/2020.
- Kenyan airspace to remain closed for regular passenger flights up to 05/07/2020. Protocols for in country flights to be drafted. Medical evacuation and repatriation flights continue.
- The Kenya Revenue Authority has published a Gazette Notice on 15 May 2020 which has a new list of goods eligible for bonded warehouses at the expiry of 90 days from the date of the Gazette Notice. Find PWC’s tax alert which does an analysis on the impact of the gazette notice to importers/exporters - PWC Analysis.
- KEPSA has published consolidated private sector protocols on maintaining health and safety after reopening of the economy – link.
- East Africa partner states adopt a Covid-19 surveillance system to mitigate the disruption of regional and global supply chain systems serving the region – See more in this article.
- The Trade Facilitation Agreement Facility hosts a platform consolidating information on actions & initiatives to facilitate trade in relation to COVID-19. The platform is a joint initiative to assist the free flow of safe cross-border trade - link.
- The government of the Netherlands is making 750 million euros available for bridge loans for Dutch registered businesses in the micro-, medium- and small business sector. These bridge loans are available to businesses with a relatively small financing need of between €10,000 and €50,000. Financiers provide the Small Credit Coronavirus guarantee scheme (KKC) - Link.
- The Alliance for a Green Revolution in Africa (AGRA) reports a 10-20% price increase of food in urban areas due to movement restrictions, floods and closure of borders. They also report that as a consequence of the resumed cargo flights 17,000 tons of produce and flowers have been exported. This signals a slow recovery, although air cargo capacity is insufficient and there is a concern on freight costs, which have increased to $ 1.8-3 per Kg from $ 0.5-.18 pre COVID-19 - Link.
- The Kenya Flower Council estimates that it will take a year for the sector to recover; exports in May rose to 65% from 20% in April and are projected to be at 80% by end of 2020.
Call for expression of interest to receive technical assistance on business/financial management and support in raising finance or investment capital. This is within the “Market Access Upgrade Programme” (MARKUP) funded by the European Union and the East African Community. The call is open to Small Medium Enterprises and cooperatives in East Africa. – see here for more details.
COVID-19 in Kenya
The Kenyan Ministry of Health is the main source of information regarding COVID-19 in Kenya. It publishes a daily update on the spread of the virus and communicates the most important information regarding containment of the virus on their COVID-19 page. An 8-point economic plan valued at KES 53.7 billion to stimulate economy after the effect of Covid-19 has been unveiled by the Government of Kenya. See this 1 pager for details.
Further information and useful links
Below we provide an overview of useful websites based on the type of questions we receive. In case you have suggestions for important and useful additions to this list, kindly share them with us by sending us an email, email@example.com.
- For Dutch entrepreneurs that are doing business in African countries, the Netherlands Enterprise Agency made an overview of useful information in Dutch.
- A number of frequently asked questions for entrepreneurs are provided by the Netherlands Chamber of Commerce in collaboration with the Netherlands Enterprise Agency here.
- The European Commission’s response to the COVID-19 pandemic includes a number of restrictions to transport, which can be found on this website of the European Commission.
- The Kenya Private Sector Alliance has opened a 24-hour call center and information portal for businesses. You can find more information on their website.
- This website gives an overview of information provided by the Government of Kenya on COVID-19 related measures, created by the Netherlands Embassy.
- The Kenya Revenue Authority has begun paying out Sh.10 billion in Value Added Tax refunds following a presidential directive (see this news item). Please find details and an analysis of the changes contained Tax Law Amendments Act of 25 April 2020 by Price Waterhouse Coopers here. As well as an analysis on the proposed Finance Bill, which was published on 5 May 2020 here.
- Following the amendments to the VAT Act, 2013, by the Finance Act, 2019, clarifying that VAT is applicable to supplies made through a digital marketplace, the Kenya Revenue Authority would like to inform members of the public that this draft - value added tax (digital marketplace supply) regulations, 2020 have been developed. KRA invites companies to send in their comments on the draft before 15 June - Here
- The EU delegation in Kenya has published a factsheet on available funding opportunities to leverage investments by the private sector in Kenya. You can find the factsheet here. Find information on additional support by the EU to bolster food security here and on the support measures of for vulnerable Kenyans here.
- The Kenya Ports Authority extends free storage period for import and export containers. The extension is valid for 90 days from 18 May 2020 and is subject to review thereafter depending on the business dynamics. Find the details here.
- Kindly find the Kenya Gazette Supplement no. 44 with the Pandemic Response and Management Bill 2020 via this link – The bill is currently going through parliament and has a number of proposals on social economic impact including employment contracts. MMAN advocates published an overview with the highlights of this proposed Bill here.
COVID-19 in the Netherlands
For questions regarding travel restriction for the Netherlands, travelling abroad and visas, have a look at information from the Netherlands government here.
More general information about COVID-19 in the Netherlands can be found here.
Owing to changing nature of the COVID pandemic, the current situation and government measures in place are continuously evolving. Please continue to update yourself on the must current state of affairs, including by verifying information with the relevant business associations or your local partner.
Together we will get through these tough times. Stay safe
Questions for the agriculture department can be addressed directly to firstname.lastname@example.org. Questions on general trade can be direct to email@example.com. For any other questions for the Embassy, this website links to the general contact information of the Netherlands Embassy in Nairobi.
For the latest updates follow us on twitter on @NLAgiKenya and the Netherlands Embassy on @NLinKenya and Facebook.