Speaking during an interview with CNN, the president, Uhuru Kenyatta said majority of the loans the government had taken are used mainly in the construction of roads, the Standard Gauge Railway, the port of Mombasa and connection of electricity which he considered as key pillars to economic prosperity.
The president dismissed reports that focused on Kenya’s debts to China alone saying the country had debts with other countries and financial institutions across the world.
He said: “I would be worried if the debts we have taken from China are used in recurrent expenditure. We have utilised our debts to close the infrastructure gap which will help improve businesses and increase job opportunities for our young men and women,” said Uhuru. country’s huge and ever increasing debts to China.
In March 2018, National Treasury Cabinet Secretary Henry Rotich revealed Kenya’s national debt stood at at-least KSh 4.9 trillion and the figure might have recently surpassed KSh 5 trillion. Recent reports indicate the country owes China KSh 980 billion accounting for a huge chuck of the country’s external debt. France is the second largest bilateral financier at KSh 64.8 billion while Japan follows with KSh 51 billion lend to Kenya.
“We are ready to work with anybody who is willing to partner with us in achieving our objective. We are not limiting our debts to China alone as we have debts to other financial institutions and countries cross the globe. Why are people not talking about those other debts?,” he posed.
Germany is the fourth biggest lender to the country with KSh 26.1 billion and Belgium follows with KSh 10.8 billion while the USA is owned KSh 3 billion by Kenya. Other bilateral lenders are Finland at KSh 1.7 billion, Denmark at KSh 1.3 billion and Netherlands at KSh 1.1 billion.