India can play a major role in shaping the Kenyan educational sector by making investments, according to Kilemi Mwiria, Minister for Higher Education, Science and Technology, Kenya.
Speaking at an interactive session with entrepreneurs from Bangalore, the Kenyan minister elaborated on areas in which both countries can benefit from a joint venture.
“Education is one of the primary areas where there are major opportunities open to investors,” the minister explained.
The Kenyan government has undergone transformations in the recent past with the introduction of free primary education.
Only 20 per cent of students who finish secondary school secure admissions in private or government universities. The rest of them are forced to go overseas for education, according to a survey by the Macro Planning Directorate, Ministry of State for Planning, Nairobi. “Most of the successful businessmen in Kenya are graduates from India. Hence, there is a huge potential for Indian entrepreneurs to establish educational institutions in Kenya,” Mwiria said.
The Kenyan government is planning to establish centres of excellence in hospitality industry, agriculture, trade, manufacturing, and engineering and information technology, among other sectors.
But many of the government training centres are currently in a dilapidated condition and require new buildings along with modern equipment.
“Indian entrepreneurs can also look at starting vocational training centres in Kenya as there is a huge demand for them,” the minister said.
He added that the Kenyan government would provide land for educational institutions at concessional rates.
The government is also planning to clear licences in as early as a fortnight to accelerate the process of development works, he said.
Apart from education, the Kenyan government is also looking for international collaboration in information, communication and technology, mining and affordable housing.
“Housing for the economically weaker sections at affordable prices is a challenge before the government. There is an opportunity for Indian engineers to collaborate with the Kenyan government on this front,” he added.