The boat-rocking pair at the heart of Ruto's government
Kenya's civil service chief Felix Koskei and the president's personal assistant, Farouk Kibet, are making an outsized mark on the affairs of state. This has fuelled tensions with the deputy president and the prime minister, who feel their wings have been clipped.
Ruto refuses to cancel coffee growers' debts
The coffee sector has struggled to find funding since recent reforms sidelined multinational traders. Meanwhile, the government is having a hard time selling its own proposals.
William Ruto's new order
Since coming to power in September 2022, Kenyan President William Ruto has sought to make good on his pledge to upend his adversaries' political "dynasties". Ruto is working to unravel their political and business networks, all while weaving his own.
Rising interest rates prompt East African Breweries to make early loan repayments
The Kenyan brewery is keen to maintain financial headroom amid challenging financial times. The second half of 2023 saw the firm's profits fall by more than 20%.
East Africa's hotly contested coffee sector
An important source of foreign currency, coffee exports are the subject of a power struggle between multinational trading companies and the region's coffee-producing countries, chief among which are Ethiopia and Kenya. While governments try to impose reforms designed to favour local producers and intermediaries, international traders, notably German and Swiss, seek to maintain their dominant position.
Nairobi seeks advice from foreign partners to amend 'visa-free' system
The introduction of Kenya's new electronic travel authorisation system has not gone smoothly. After applying some initial tweaks, Kenyan diplomats are discussing the issue with their international counterparts.
Kenyan fund Heri Holdings breaks the bank to buy Nova Academies
Approved by the Competition Authority of Kenya in January, the purchase of the Nova Academies Tatu City education group has cost the investment fund Heri Holdings around 1.6bn shillings ($10.3m).
Nairobi prepares Haitian police mission despite court ruling
The government is trying to ignore a High Court ruling blocking Kenyan forces being sent to help restore order in Port-au-Prince. Despite some internal discord, it is continuing to select officers for the mission.
Potential Odinga bid to chair AU Commission divides allies and foes
The Kenyan opposition leader has expressed an interest in the government's proposal that he run for the presidency of the African Union's executive arm. But his allies smell a trap, while some in power don't like the idea of him regaining his international standing.
William Ruto's solo diplomacy leaves top advisers sidelined
The Kenyan president is personally steering his country's foreign policy on sensitive issues, much to the chagrin of his most experienced advisers who fear that Nairobi is losing its voice on the international stage.
Ruto struggles to find new jobs for his allies
Dozens of the president's supporters reckon they merit government posts, far more than the number available. Only the most powerful are likely to prevail.
Treasury under IMF pressure to settle outstanding contractor bills
The government has for the past two decades been racking up debts to its contractors. The situation has now become untenable and must be addressed if Kenya is to benefit from the next tranche of IMF aid.
Smallholders up in arms over coffee sector reforms
The abrupt end of milling and marketing by multinational players is disrupting Kenya's coffee sector. Faced with unsold product and growing stocks of green beans, small-scale producers are calling on the government to reverse its policy.
The New Guard
Morocco, Kenya, Ethiopia
Every Wednesday, Africa Intelligence spotlights a new generation of movers and shakers in business and politics.
Morocco Brahim Yacoubi Soussane, at helm of naval industry
Kenya Dorcas Owinoh, hard-wired into tech ecosystem
Ethiopia Berhan Taye, from Mozilla to Algorithmic Justice League
Tarus affair adds to tensions between Kenya and Uganda
The incident that has blown up around former Kenyan diplomat and minister Stephen Tarus, who has been accused of gold trafficking in Uganda, has crystallised tensions between the two countries.
State agencies race for foreign currency as Kenyan shilling plummets
Invitations to tender in Kenya are increasingly issued in dollars or euros, prompting state-owned firms to invoice for their services in foreign currency. The trend towards dollarisation of the economy risks further draining the country's foreign exchange reserves, which are already at an all-time low.
In Tokyo, Ruto hopes to reassure his Western partners
The Kenyan president's three-day visit to the Japanese capital comes as Nairobi is trying to deepen ties with neighbouring China.
Gachagua quietly hands coffee reform reins to controversial Kenyatta-era economist
The deputy president's efforts to shake up a pillar of Kenya's economy are directly inspired by the work of Joseph Kieyah, an academic whom ex-president Uhuru Kenyatta tasked with breathing new life into the sector in 2016 and who is now back in the picture.
Big tobacco steers Nairobi's cigarette tax revamp
After months of tobacco industry lobbying, the Kenyan government is working on a new formula for taxing cigarettes, which could benefit certain manufacturers. Health campaigners are worried.