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Present during Thursday's Press briefing ...
Present during Thursday's Press briefing were cabinet secretaries Adan Mohammed (Industrilisation), Joseph ole Lenku (Interior), David Chirchir (Energy), industrialist Chris Kirubi and chairman of Kenya National Chamber of Commerce and Industry Kiprono Kittony.
Chris Kirubi is one of a new wave of home-grown entrepreneurs that have found a niche in Kenya, having amassed a sizeable fortune with a range of international franchises from DHL to BIC pens, of which his company is one of the world's largest manufacturers.
As chairman of the Kenyan Association of Manufacturers, he is, unsurprisingly, an ardent supporter of liberalized trade, and has pounded the halls of Congress actively lobbying for the African Growth and Opportunity Act.
"The bill should have been passed along time ago.
We can't afford to remain dependent on aid.
It's killing Africa," says Kirubi
is uncompromising in his
belief that the government has often failed to put its house in order.
How can we trade with each ...
How can we trade with each other if we don't open our countries with each other?," said Chris Kirubi, a local investor in Kenya Airways.
Is Kibaki losing the graft war?
Mr Chris Kirubi, a one-time chairman of KAM and a leading businessman, however, insisted that the government was not moving fast enough.
"We are not happy that there are more corruption-related reports coming out of government," he
said. Kirubi cited the Sh2.7 billion procurement scandal for a passport machine that has seen several senior government officials suspended and pulling in the Finance minister and his National Security counterpart as one of those cases that are sending wrong signals to investors.
"The government has a long way to go.The real work has not began and we need the government to open up by showing commitment in the fight against corruption," said Kirubi
HBS Africa Business Conference 04-15-01 by Peter Maier
The liveliest discussion seemed to be between Chris Kirubi, Justin Chinyanta and Robert Tubman on the "Sustainability and Globalization" panel.
...Chris Kirubi, a Kenyan board member of several corporations including Haco Industries, was direct and somewhat charming in his approach.
"In the U.S. corruption is called soft money (or commissions).It is a question of how you look at it."Kirubi
also described the term "poverty alleviation" to be condescending."Despite the risks, the rewards [of investing in Africa] are great."He
enthusiastically cheered President Clinton's Africa Growth and Opportunity Act, which "made business great" for investment in Africa.He
then encouraged African students in the United States to make a good living and enjoy life more by returning home and opening factories and developing economic opportunities.