NAIROBI (Xinhua) --
The Kenyan stock market’s benchmark
index has dropped to a ten-year low battered by foreign
investors exiting the bourse amid jitters in global markets.
The Nairobi Securities Exchange (NSE) 20 Share Index, which
captures the performance of 20 top stocks, stood at 2,543.11
points on Tuesday, a level it closed on March 9, 2009.
Tuesday’s level was 0.48 points lower from last Friday’s
position, with the index that once stood at 5,400 points,
registering a free-fall during the last weeks.
According to the Capital Markets Authority (CMA), trading at
the Kenya bourse has slowed down due to exit by foreign
investors following global jitters occasioned by U.S.-China
CMA data showed that during the second quarter, foreigners
sold shares worth 38 billion Kenyan shillings (374 million U.S.
dollars) as compared to 343 million dollars purchases, with
their participation declining to 69 percent from 76 percent in
the first three months.
Kenya seeks to increase
research funding to improve food security
NAIROBI (Xinhua) --
Kenya will increase funding for research as part
of efforts to boost food security in the country, a senior
government official said on Tuesday.
Deputy President William Ruto said the move will also boost
the quality of information and ultimately inform proper
"I am happy to note that the government of Kenya has fully
embraced digital data and information to help the country
fast-track achievement of the Big 4 Agenda," Ruto told
participants at the Regional Centre for Mapping of Resources for
Development (RCMRD) International Conference and the 4th AfriGEO
"Through applications developed at RCMRD, in collaboration
with partners, we can now monitor crop conditions from planting
to harvesting, and thus help the country plan well on food
security for its people," said Ruto.
"Through geo-spatial technologies, I challenge you to further
seek solutions to the problem of food distribution and market
systems in the region, to not only foster efficient trade, but
also ensure that a Kenyan should not die of hunger when there is
a surplus in a neighboring country, or even county," he added.
The deputy president said lack of right information and a
supply of stale information continued to haunt the turnaround of
Africa and urged conference participants to use innovations in
geo-spatial technologies to project and plan for the needs of
"I am pleasantly informed that our neighbors in Rwanda have
embraced drone technology to provide essential health services
such as delivery of medical supplies," said Ruto.
Such examples, he said, inspire other countries to see that
Earth observation and responsible use of space should drive
Africa’s inquisitiveness to seek solutions for problems facing
Ruto said scientists need to partner with the government and
public institutions in producing accurate data that can guide
the development of Africa.
Farida Karoney, cabinet secretary of Kenya’s Ministry of
Lands and Physical Planning, said science and innovation should
be at the center of tackling challenges facing Africa, adding
that technology was a crucial player in the attainment of the
sustainable development goals.
"Crucially, it is these research-backed data that would drive
the Big Four Agenda in Kenya.
"I see a clear linkage between accessibility of education for
societal benefit and the information streams derived from Earth
observation technologies," Karoney said.
She said geo-spatial science and technology is already
playing a central role in the daily decisions as well as
national endeavors to attain development goals.
"I need not emphasize how Earth observation is transforming
decisions in transport, agriculture, wildlife management among
"We must strive for improved management of our land resources
with technologies that ease our field operations for data
acquisition, storage, and analysis, and make it practical for us
to engage in constructive dialogue with our communities in
planning for land use," Karoney said.