Home | Opinion & Research | Kenya Economy Growth Mirrored to U.S $57 Billion to $17 Trillion Growth in 80 years?

Kenya Economy Growth Mirrored to U.S $57 Billion to $17 Trillion Growth in 80 years?

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U.S 80 years growth from $57Billion Billion to $16.8Trillion U.S 80 years growth from $57Billion Billion to $16.8Trillion

The U.S economy was at $57 billion dollars in 1933 after the start of the great depression in 1929. From $57 Billion and 125 million population, the U.S economy would grow and in 80 years reach $16.8 trillion and a population of about 318 million Per Capita income of $52,800. Can Kenyans grow from the current $50 billion economy with 44 million population and Per Capita $1,100 on a similar trajectory like U.S?

To be able to have such a trajectory that grows economy upward with consideration that population is also growing the word, “Sustainable,” wherever used would have to be clearly understood and implemented with clear bills and laws by the persons who seeks to guide the growth when occupying the office of President.  

Kenya Constitution 10 (2) The national values and principles of governance include–– (a) patriotism, national unity, sharing and devolution of power, the rule of law, democracy and participation of the people; (b) human dignity, equity, social justice, inclusiveness, equality, human rights, non-discrimination and protection of the marginalised; (c) good governance, integrity, transparency and accountability; and  (d) sustainable development.

This constitution law could summarize the system that the U.S applied in the New Deal that started 1933 that anchored the growth. President Roosevelt at one year reached an 18% growth rate. Kenyans would have to be patriotic to Kenya constitution and have a set of national unity values. Devolution was the key to progress with the U.S growing to 87,000 devolved units with power, Kenya can also grow in devolved power units so as to increase efficiency and maximum productivity. To have sustainable development the right policies would have to be enacted for the long run as well five year election period and every year. Currently bad policies like Anglo leasing and others are affecting sustainable development 10 years after the bad policy was enacted.         

Kenya Constitution 60. (1) Land in Kenya shall be held, used and managed in a manner that is equitable, efficient, productive and sustainable, and in accordance with the following principles— (c) sustainable and productive management of land resources. 

Kenya land is resorded as 581,300 sq km, about 144 million acres. This compared to the U.S 9,826,675 sq km about 17 times the size of Kenya could scare Kenya. However,if the Kenya Land resources are managed in a sustainable and productive way then Kenya has more than enough land to cater for even double the current population 88 million in the next 50 years. Land in Kenya is currently anchored on speculation as opposed to production just like U.S land was anchored on speculation before the great depression. However, Kenya constitution 2010 empowers each of the 47 counties to make its land productive through charging property rate. Property rate is a charge that gives the land responsibility to meet costs of servicing the land with roads. Property rates contribute toward the budgets of the many devolded units as they also support industrial budgets. Again the right sustainable and productive systems would have to be development.       

Kenya Constitution 69. (1) The State shall— (a) ensure sustainable exploitation, utilisation, management and conservation of the environment and natural resources, and ensure the equitable sharing of the accruing benefits. 

Kenya today can easily grow the economy with new methods that have been established that ensure the conservation of environment and natural resources. It is here that Kenya could benefit immensely from looking at the best practices. Water resource that is a natural renewable system can easily be destroyed if environmental conservation and management is not set to lead to sustainable supply even as population grows.   

Kenya Constitution 69. (2) Every person has a duty to cooperate with State organs and other persons to protect and conserve the environment and ensure ecologically sustainable development and use of natural resources.

Using an example of water following in rivers, the sustainable co-operation is where individuals do not pollute the rivers by making the rivers the disposal grounds of waste but work on creating systems to make waste. Kenya can learn from best practices worldwide on ecologically sustainable development. Technology is also helping in conserve the environment especially water though conservative ways of usage that ensure the drawing of water is not increasing per population growth. 

Kenya Constitution 230. (1) There is established the Salaries and Remuneration Commission.  (4) The powers and functions of the Salaries and Remuneration Commission shall be to— (a) set and regularly review the remuneration and benefits of all State officers; and  (b) advise the national and county governments on the remuneration and benefits of all other public officers. (5) In performing its functions, the Commission shall take the following principles into account— (a) the need to ensure that the total public compensation bill is fiscally sustainable

Kenya Constitution article 230 required that the public wage bill be fiscally sustainable. A wage bill that leads to creation of a large bill for government service takes away from the larger private sector. Kenya today has a population of about 22 million workers of which 800,000 are in the public sector. It is important to have the right tax amount so more jobs can emerge. President Reagan policies that moved the economy of U.S from $2.85 trillion to $5.25 trillion a growth by $3.4 trillion in 8 years were mainly on sustainable development with less taxation or government.  

Kenya can indeed grow like the U.S. Kenya is capable of reaching even 15% growth in some years. However, the current national government budget and policies for 2014/2015 are only projected to reach 6% GDP growth. The Salaries and Remuneration Commission (SRC) 14 commissioners failed Kenya by not setting the first fiscally sustainable wage as the first new governments created under the new constitution 2010 took office from March 2013. There is hope that the land sustainable system can be the engine of growth. However, the speculation and holding of land as wealth is at war with making land a factor of production and the mess that could ensure could take Kenya toward the wrong direction for many years. It is important that the trustee of the millions of titles that will anchor production of land capital be known so money can flow into defined lands though accepted plans and policies for the beneficiaries, the county residents, as envisioned by constitution 185 (4) that states, "A county Assembly may receive and approve plans and policies for— (a) the management and exploitation of the county’s resources; and (b) the development and management of its infrastructure and institutions."

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