Kenyan President urges banks to lower lending rates

Mar 08, 2011

The President of Kenya has called for banks to reduce interest rates.

Mwai Kibaki, President of Kenya, has urged banks and financial institutions in the country to lower their lending interest rates to help facilitate credit access to the population, Bloomberg reports.

In a meeting that took place on March 4th in Nairobi, he asked Robert Diamond, Chief Executive Officer of Barclays, to set an example and to be the first to lower his interest rates to a "reasonable" level.

According to the Kenyan President, this reduction will not only facilitate credit access for Kenyans, but also spur the country’s economic growth, which would be beneficial to banks.

The Kenyan Head of State hopes to see interest rates decrease to five or six per cent instead of the 14.03 per cent lending rate observed by the nation's banks during January 2011.

According to the news site AllAfrica, this official request follows the "continuous reduction" of the Central Bank rate by the Central Bank of Kenya, in the aim of encouraging them to do the same.