IDEAS home Printed from
MyIDEAS: Log in (now much improved!) to save this paper

Kenya's quest for growth stabilization and reforms - but political stability ?

Listed author(s):
  • Bandiera, Luca
  • Kumar, Praveen
  • Pinto, Brian
Registered author(s):

    Kenya has long had a reputation of being politically risky, manifested in corruption, uncertainty about policies, and the importance of political connections in doing business. Kenya began its economic liberalization in 1993. Reform picked up speed after a tightening of aid by donors on governance grounds and an attempt to re-establish credibility following the costly Goldenberg scandal uncovered in 1992. But tangible results in the shape of favorable government debt dynamics and a pick up in growth took a decade to materialize. The paper argues that the peaceful presidential election and transfer of power in December 2002 was central to the economic upswing after 2002. The subsequent decline in political risk was singled out by the private sector as an important development. The paper draws on an analysis of debt dynamics, the evolution of domestic interest rates, and the latest Investment Climate Assessment to present evidence on the criticality of low political risk in facilitating good economic outcomes after 2003. The December 2007 elections have highlighted other aspects of political risk - ethnic and social tensions with roots in inequality. The findings of this paper underline the importance of establishing a foundation for long-term political stability and social cohesion in view of the disruptions following the December 2007 elections. This process is likely to be at least as difficult and lengthy as fundamental economic policy and institutional reform.

    If you experience problems downloading a file, check if you have the proper application to view it first. In case of further problems read the IDEAS help page. Note that these files are not on the IDEAS site. Please be patient as the files may be large.

    File URL:
    Download Restriction: no

    Paper provided by The World Bank in its series Policy Research Working Paper Series with number 4685.

    in new window

    Date of creation: 01 Aug 2008
    Handle: RePEc:wbk:wbrwps:4685
    Contact details of provider: Postal:
    1818 H Street, N.W., Washington, DC 20433

    Phone: (202) 477-1234
    Web page:

    More information through EDIRC

    No references listed on IDEAS
    You can help add them by filling out this form.

    This item is not listed on Wikipedia, on a reading list or among the top items on IDEAS.

    When requesting a correction, please mention this item's handle: RePEc:wbk:wbrwps:4685. See general information about how to correct material in RePEc.

    For technical questions regarding this item, or to correct its authors, title, abstract, bibliographic or download information, contact: (Roula I. Yazigi)

    If you have authored this item and are not yet registered with RePEc, we encourage you to do it here. This allows to link your profile to this item. It also allows you to accept potential citations to this item that we are uncertain about.

    If references are entirely missing, you can add them using this form.

    If the full references list an item that is present in RePEc, but the system did not link to it, you can help with this form.

    If you know of missing items citing this one, you can help us creating those links by adding the relevant references in the same way as above, for each refering item. If you are a registered author of this item, you may also want to check the "citations" tab in your profile, as there may be some citations waiting for confirmation.

    Please note that corrections may take a couple of weeks to filter through the various RePEc services.

    This information is provided to you by IDEAS at the Research Division of the Federal Reserve Bank of St. Louis using RePEc data.