Strategy for development cooperation with Kenya: Jan 2009-Dec 2013



The overarching goal of Swedish development cooperation with Kenya is a Kenya in which all poor people have the opportunity to improve their living conditions, and where their human rights are realised. The overall strategic dialogue issues are: economic growth, just and equitable distribution of resources and opportunities, a rights perspective in policymaking and policy implementation, the fight against corruption, and implementation of vital reforms to address the historical obstacles to development that lay at the root of the violent outbreaks at the beginning of 2008.

Development cooperation with Kenya will be focused on the following sectors: democratic governance and human rights, natural resources and the environment, and urban development. Aid will be provided for implementation of key reform programmes and support will at the same time be extended to civil society in order to generate pressure for their implementation.

The Swedish strategy is based on the Kenya Joint Assistance Strategy (KJAS) that therefore forms an integrated part of the cooperation strategy. In accordance with the stated process objectives, Sweden will work for the establishment of a mechanism for following up results and commitments set out in Kenya's poverty reduction strategy.

Although Kenya's development has moved in a positive direction in recent years, major challenges remain in a number of areas, mainly democratic governance, but also equitable distribution of government resources, more balanced development in the country as a whole and continued reduction of poverty in all its dimensions. The situation following the 2007 elections highlighted issues which, though crucial to Kenya's development have remained unresolved since independence.

These include the need for a new constitution and land reform, the problems associated with a society and a political environment based on ethnic and personal alliances, the need to end impunity for corruption and to address the problem of growing slum neighbourhoods in urban areas. Swedish development cooperation will focus on these issues.

The results analysis points to the need for sector concentration and more systematic performance follow-ups. It also emphasises that efforts to ensure that all programmes and projects are informed by a rights perspective have been successful and should continue. Sweden's comparative advantages lie in its extensive knowledge of Kenya, based on a long-standing presence and previous cooperation, its strong credibility with the Kenyan Government and civil society given its lack of a colonial past, the broad character of Swedish-Kenyan relations and a long history of development cooperation with the country. Together, these factors create conditions conducive to dialogue, even on difficult issues such as democracy, human rights and combating corruption.

Swedish aid to Kenya for the period 2009-2013 will amount to approximately SEK 350 million per year, excluding humanitarian aid, regional programmes and support via Swedish framework organisations.