Lending Institutions, Health Care, and Human Capital
Kenya is an African nation in Eastern Africa; it is classified as a developing nation and considered an entry point to the African market after South Africa. Kenya was colonized by the United Kingdom, an indication that the country is an English speaking nation. The industrial base is not fully developed, has low Human Development Index and the living standards are low compared to many developed nations of the world. Incomes for most nations are compared on the basis of Gross Domestic Product per Capita. Surveys have indicated that Kenya is one of the heavy borrowers from the International Monetary Fund (IMF) and World Bank among others financial institutions.
Surveys have indicated that funds connected to the IMF and World Bank have been influential economically, socially, politically and in facilitating health reforms in the region (Imf.org., 2013). World Bank has confirmed direct links to Kenya and it is one of the major players among the local and global financial institutions (Irungu, 2013). Surveys conducted in 2008 indicated that Kenya was offered with 0.6 billion dollars in facilitating the infrastructures and other developments with the nation (Irungu, 2013).
Surveys done on the African continent indicated that Kenya is at position six, with more than 9.0 billion dollars. Kenya in a number of times has been accused of mismanagement and corruption (Anassi, 2006), a practice that has led to the funds being channeled to unintended ends. As a result of the misuse of the funds, IMF and World Bank has initiated stringent measures in curbing the unethical practice, and in making sure that funds are used according to the predetermined plans and budgets (Panford, 2001).
Projects supported by IMF and World Bank in Kenya are in the agricultural sector, energy sector, tourism sector, development of infrastructure and in education sector. A program that has brought changes in Kenya identify with the Lighting Africa Project, which has facilitated off-grid lighting systems powered by the solar power.
International funds are distributed by the International Development Association (IDA), an international arm closely connected to the World Bank (Panford, 2001). Kenya is one of the nations in Africa benefiting from the Extended Credit Facility (ECF), which is closely connected to the IMF (Imf.org., 2013). IMF in particular has been supporting global tourism in Kenya hence promoting employment, increasing financial stability of the stakeholders, propelling the economic growth and in encouraging international trade (Irungu, 2013).
Kenya is heavily affected by tropical diseases such as malaria and tuberculosis among others. Kenya is also negatively affected by the HIV-AIDS (Human Immunodeficiency Virus – Antiretroviral Immune Deficiency Syndrome). Children and women are the hardly hit in the society, and the communities are encouraged in portraying responsible behaviors and in taking medications as instructed by the medical representatives in the region (Litali, 2013). Gender inequality in Kenya is a reality, although the gap is closing up with time.
Kenya is also negatively affected by political disputes (Lynch, 2011); currently the army has been deployed in the Northern part of Kenya to calm disputes among different clans and tribes: mainly in Turkana, Marsabit, Samburu, Wajir, Isiolo and Moyale among other regions in the country. Motor Vehicle accidents in Kenya are one of the highest in the world, posing a health hazard to the local people and to international visitors. More than three thousand persons die each year as a result to reckless driving in Kenya.
Kenyan health factor is directly related to the economic status of the nation. Developed nations like United Kingdom is characterized with better heath care as compared to Kenya which is a developing nation; Although Kenya is constantly improving its health care in the region (Litali, 2013). Medics are currently on strike posing a major blow to the developing health care in the country. Programs such as ESP (Kenya Economic Stimulus Program) is spearheading the economic recovery of Kenya through expanding job opportunities, food security, social stability, improving infrastructure like the Thika Road Superhighway and in improving on education. Good health is directly proportional to economic development, in which Kenya is eyeing, where medical funds will be channeled to economic development.
Kenya is characterized with an educated workforce; unfortunately the leadership in the region is not up to the desired standards. This is reflecting in the eyes of corruption and political wars within the nation (Anassi, 2006). In 1997 till 2001, World Bank and IMF had suspended the international funds due to poor leadership in the region, resulting from gross misconducts (Imf.org., 2013). Bribes or ‘Kitu Kidogo’ is a common phrase among the Kenyans. Public funds has been misused, Kenya was placed at position one hundred and thirty nine out of one hundred and seventy six most corrupt countries in the world (Anassi, 2006). Kenyan government has responded to the issues of corruption by creating websites where the offenses will be reported directly to the top management teams in the government. Exogenous Shock Facility (ESF), which is facilitated by the IMF and World Bank, has propelled economic, social and political developments in the region (Imf.org., 2013).
Modernization is changing the face of Kenya, playing as a vital hub in finances, education, agriculture, industries and transportation within the region. The current government is facilitating foreign investments, public investments and private industrial development in uplifting the status of the nation in Eastern Africa and in the world in general. Corporate governance has been improving with time, and World Bank and IMF has since offered support to the country after some years of absence in the region.
Anassi, P. (2006). Corruption in Africa: The Kenyan Experience. Bloomington, Indiana: Trafford Publishing.
Imf.org. (2013, October 02). Statement at the Conclusion of an IMF Mission to Kenya. Retrieved December 18, 2013, from Imf.org: http://www.imf.org/external/np/sec/pr/2013/pr13382.htm
Irungu, G. (2013, October 13). Kenya ranked third largest recipient of World Bank loans. Retrieved December 18, 2013, from Businessdailyafrica.com: http://www.businessdailyafrica.com/Kenya-ranked-third-largest-recipient-of-World-Bank-loans/-/539552/2030434/-/8ql4nu/-/index.html
Litali, G. (2013). Financing health care in Kenya. Saarbrücken: LAP LAMBERT Academic Publishing.
Lynch, G. (2011). I Say to You: Ethnic Politics and the Kalenjin in Kenya. Chicago: University Of Chicago Press.
Panford, K. (2001). IMF-World Bank and Labor’s Burdens in Africa. Westport, Connecticut: Greenwood Press.