The Kenya Private Sector Alliance (KEPSA) unveil Chief Executive Officers’ (CEOs) Business Confidence Index Survey Report 2022 at their KEPSA headquarters this morning.
The report was jointly developed with TIFA Research to evaluate prevailing economic trends.
Speaking during the event, Maggie Ireri, CEO Tifa Research said the overall Business Confidence Index is currently at 61 points out of 100.
The hospitality and tourism sectors being the most optimistic at 68 index points, given that the sector was recovering from a worse situation occasioned by Covid-19 Pandemic compared to other sectors.
“The CEO Business Confidence Index Survey seeks to gauge the economic outlook of CEOs, determining their concerns for their businesses, and their view on where the economy is headed.
CEOs are regarded as having the power to make large investment decisions that can impact the economy as a whole and they also provide investors and entrepreneurs with valuable insight into current and future economic conditions.” Maggie added.
Additionally, Carol Kariuki, CEO KEPSA acknowledged that the private sector recognises that politics and economy are intertwined and have to be approached with the same awareness and interventions.
“We have seen how politics can affect the economy at both extreme ends positively and negatively and that’s why we came together as multiple stakeholder in 2012 with the Mkenya Daima Initiative to enrich political discourse and civic engagement in issue-based politics and peaceful elections.
These interventions have helped to shield off the economy from politics and for the first time in 2013, our economy achieved a positive growth for the first time in our history,” added Carol Kariuki.
The Index report collected a view from a total of 173 business leaders at the level of CEOs, MD’s, COO and directors from Small, Medium and large companies.
The respondents were drawn from all different sectors of the economy including agriculture, manufacturing, tourism and hospitality, finance, ICT, building and construction, wholesale and retail and services industries.
Further the report has learned the Finance and ICT sectors as least optimistic, while other sectors like manufacturing and agriculture are already experiencing positive growth.
The Confidence Index has been ranked the highest this year at 61 per cent as compared to 44 per cent and 53.8 per cent in 2017 and 2012 respectively.
According to the report, despite the prevailing political season the economic conditions are expected to improve across all industries compared to six months ago.
In order to stabilize the economy the report recommended tax concessions such as reduction and exemption of taxes to improve the prevailing business conditions Further the CEO’s recommended lowering of prices of raw materials and firm inputs, cost of energy for the agribusiness and manufacturing industries.
These sentiments are reported against the backdrop of the Russia Ukraine War that has disrupted value chains, resulting in fuel, energy, wheat and fertilizer price increments, which are critical inputs for Kenya’s manufacturing and agriculture sector.
This is coupled with the rising inflation in Kenya and across the globe as well as the long period of drought KEPSA conducts these Surveys ahead of general elections to gauge the confidence with which business leaders have about their businesses, industry and the economy.
They have been releasing these reports since July 2017, just before the General Elections and they have sustained the same efforts in this year’s General election.
Some of the interesting factors behind the 2022 optimism that were cited by the leaders include political stability, their plans to substantial increase the numbers of full-time employees while at the same time having a strong will to retain most of their full-time employees.