According to a 2016 World Bank Report, Chinese businesses in Kenya on average employed 360 local employees.
This is more than the average 147 locals employed by other foreign enterprises in Kenya.
According to the latest Kenya-China Economic Trade Association (KCETA) data, KCETA members have increased the number of local jobs from 42,000 in 2016 to more than 50,000.
The localization rate of employees of KCETA members has reached 96 per cent, the highest by any entity.
Speaking during the inaugural ceremony held on Tuesday in recognition of KCETA employees, the organisation’s member companies committed to avail over 1500 job opportunities to Kenyan youth.
Just recently, KCETA held a Career Fair to showcase opportunities available for Kenyan youth.
During the awarding ceremony which was also a part of the 55th Anniversary celebrations of the Kenya-China diplomatic relations, KCETA awarded 55 outstanding Kenyan employees working in Chinese companies operating in Kenya.
“As we celebrate the local employees in these companies, we take this opportunity to commend each and every employee for the dedication that they have shown over the years. As we focus on growing our relations, we want to continue providing an enabling environment that will see more local employees enjoy and thrive while working within KCETA member companies,” said Li Xuhang, Charge d’Affaires, Chinese Embassy in Kenya.
The 55 employees from 20 Chinese enterprises operating in Kenya were rewarded for their excellent performance within the organizations.
They come from across the country, representing 24 counties, including Kisii, Siaya, Nairobi, Kilifi, Busia, Taita Taveta, Machakos, Kitui and Meru.
In April 2019, the awardees will travel to Beijing and Shanghai in China.
Delilah Wendy Aminilwa, an employee of the China Road and Bridge Corporation (CRBC) said, “Working with the KCETA companies has proven to be a worthwhile journey.”
Speaking on behalf of the 55 winners, she added: “The recognition we have received today is well appreciated as it showcases the appreciation that the companies have to the local communities. We look forward to touring China in April.”
Among the Chinese enterprises that will facilitate the trip to China are: China Road and Bridge Company, Huawei Technologies Kenya, and Keda Kenya Ceramics Company Ltd.
Kenya and China have enjoyed close relations over the last 50 years.
China is Kenya’s largest trading partner, having overtaken the traditional trade partners in value and volumes of goods and services exchanged between the two countries.
Joseph Mbeva, a director in the ministry lauded KCETA members for being deliberate in ensuring that they constantly increase the number of local representatives in their institutions.
Speaking on behalf of Principal Secretary State department for Industrialization in the Ministry of Industry, Trade and Cooperative Betty Maina, Mbeva lauded KCETA members for being deliberate in ensuring that they constantly increase the number of local representatives in their institutions.
“During the last decade, trade between our two countries has sustained a positive upward trajectory and we look forward to working more closely with the Chinese community toward a mutually beneficial result.”
He added that in the coming years, “the relationship between the two countries will continue to grow and the ties that unite us will deepen. Congratulations to the 55 local employees recognized today. It is our hope that the same spirit of collaboration will be shared among all other locals in the coming years,” he said.
As a non-profit organization with 97 Chinese company members, KCETA aims to explore business cooperation between China and Kenya and enhance cultural exchanges; while actively shouldering Corporate Social Responsibility to promote community cohesion.
KCETA has been a catalyst force for promoting cooperation between the two countries.
Chief Administrative Secretary in the Ministry of Foreign Affairs, Ababu Namwamba, said that the celebration is a reminder that the outstanding local employees are the most valuable asset of the Chinese companies, as they bring vitality, diversity, energy, cultural integration into their organizations.
He said they are the ones to help their organizations to achieve targets and realize developments that contribute to Kenya’s modern transformation journey.