Thursday, June 25, 2009

Kenya: EAC Lauds KCB's Regional Expansion

Walter Wafula, The Monitor, 24 June 2009

Kenya Commercial Bank (KCB) has been lauded for its expansion in the Great Lakes region by a top executive of the East African Community, saying that its growth is evidence of the possibility of successful integration.

Mr Alloys Mutabingwa, the deputy secretary general of the East African Community in charge of Planning and Infrastructure, hailed the KCB Group for establishing its operations in Uganda, Rwanda, Tanzania away from its home in Kenya. KCB is also expected to extend its footprint to Burundi, by the end of this year, according to Mr Maurice Toroitich, the managing director KCB Rwanda.

The bank is also giving more East Africans an opportunity to be its part owners by cross-listing its shares on various stock exchanges. So far, it is listed on the Nairobi Stock Exchange, Uganda Securities Exchange, Rwanda Over The Counter (Rwanda's stock market), and the Dar es salaam Stock Market.

Mr Mutabingwa also commended the Group for its favourable interest rates, superb customer service and high impact branding techniques.

"Indeed you have pioneered and we have no doubt that you can develop modern banking techniques for the whole region," he said on a working visit to the KCB Rwanda Head Office in Kigali, Rwanda on Tuesday.

He said the East Africa Partner States agreed and are providing the enabling environment for the private sector and the civil society to take full advantage of the Community. The five states including Burundi, are working out modalities to promote constant dialogue with the private sector to help create an improved business environment in the region, through the EAC Secretariat.

Mr Toroitich, however, urged the EAC Secretariat to actively take the lead in improving the business environment by removing what he called residual "small roadblocks" and other barriersto trade and investments in the region.