On 26th to 28th April, 2023, USAID’s Kenya Small Business Development Centers (Kenya SBDC) Program supported a high-level Kenyan delegation visit to Washington, D.C. to share learnings on the formulation, adoption, and implementation of policy, legal and institutional frameworks for the development and growth of MSMEs.
The delegation constituted key MSME ecosystem representatives from the Kenyan government and private sectors. Among them were: the Cabinet Secretary of the Ministry of Co-operatives and MSME Development, Simon Chelugui, Micro and Small Enterprises Authority (MSEA) Director General, Henry Rithaa, Members of Parliament, USAID representatives, County representatives from implementing counties, Office of the President representative and Dr. Caesar Mwangi, Executive Dean, Strathmore Business School (SBS).
The delegation had an opportunity to visit the U.S. Senate Small Business Committee and the U.S. House of Representatives Small Business Committee and Howard University. Through in-depth discussions, the team gained a better understanding and insight into the structure, framework, and oversight of the SBDC program. They also learned how each party has influenced the evolution and sustainability of the model over its more than 40 years in operation, and how they collaborate to advocate and design policies that favor the MSMEs sector in the country.
To strengthen the sustainability and success of the SBDCs in Kenya, there is a need to develop and enact legislation that enables small business growth and development. Additionally, expanding the role and mandate of the MSME Authority as an enabler and advocate for MSMEs across the country will be key.
Ultimately, all the parties committed to working together to create favorable policy, legal and institutional frameworks to ensure the sustainability of MSMEs in Kenya.
By Jane Mumo
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