The United Nations resident coordinator in Kenya has lauded the positive impact of the Belt and Road Initiative (BRI) in the country’s development progress.
In an interview with Xinhua news agency, Siddharth Chatterjee said that the BRI had availed great opportunities for the East African country, including the provision of job opportunities to the locals.
“I want to commend China for what is doing in transforming the infrastructure landscape in Kenya and the rest of Africa,” Chatterjee said during a forum on the UN Development Assistance Framework (UNDAF) 2018-2022, which will guide the UN’s financial assistance to Kenya.
The UN coordinator urged Kenya to take advantage of the BRI, and blend it with other opportunities that come from other parts of the world.
He noted that the country has an infrastructure deficit which if removed, would ease the movement of goods and people across the country.
“Countries that developed such as the Asian tigers and Western Europe used their modern infrastructure to catalyze more production and trade which creates jobs in the long run,” he said.
He also urged Kenya to improve the ease of doing business in order to attract more foreign direct investment into the country.
The name Belt and Road Initiative was coined in 2013 by Chinese President Xi Jinping. He drew inspiration from the concept of the famous Silk Road established some 2,000 years ago.
The initiative – initially known as One Belt, One Road – aims to eradicate poverty, create jobs, address the consequences of international financial crises, promote sustainable development, and advance market-based industrial transformation and economic diversification.
The BRI also aims to strengthen infrastructure, trade, and investment links between China and the rest of the world.