President Uhuru Kenyatta has assured Indian investors that Kenya is an open and safe investment destination and encouraged them to explore business opportunities in the country.

The Kenyan government has undertaken a wide range of regulatory reforms which have significantly reduced the cost of doing business in the country, he said when addressing the 2017 Vibrant Gujarat Global Summit here Wednesday. He was the chief guest at the high-level business forum which was inaugurated earlier by Prime Minister Narendra Modi.

“Indian investors already in Kenya can testify that we are an open and safe investment destination, with a favourable business environment facilitated by my Government’s efforts to improve business regulation procedures and requirements, President Kenyatta said.

He noted that the government’s efforts to improve the business environment was recognized by the World Bank in its 2015 Doing Business report which showed that Kenya has moved up 28 spots from 136 in 2014 to 108 in 2015 on the ease of starting a business, dealing with construction permits, getting electricity, registering property, getting credit and paying taxes.

In order to further enhance the attractiveness of Kenya as an investment destination, the government had prioritized infrastructure development to spur growth and job creation in all sectors of the economy, he said.

Saying there are still opportunities within the infrastructure sector for Indian businesses to invest in, President Kenyatta added that Kenya’s economy is the largest and most integrated in the East Africa sub-region with significant utilization of technology and innovation in businesses.

Kenya also has one of the highest mobile telephony and Internet connectivity rates on the African continent as well as a highly educated, sophisticated, creative and enthusiastic human resource pool and an advanced financial services sector to serve any kind of investment.

Kenya’s central geographical position in the East and Central Africa region is ideal for investors to use as a launch pad to penetrate the enormous market of over 650 million people of the Tripartite Free Trade Area arrangement which brings together 26 countries in northern, eastern and southern Africa, the President added.

Prime Minister Modi said India is a rising star in the global economy with its middle class offering a vast market to investors.

Other speakers included renowned Indian business magnates Mukesh Ambani, the Reliance Industries Chairman, and Adani Group chairman Gautam Adani.

Earlier, President Kenyatta separately held talks with Prime Minister Modi and with President Paul Kagame of Rwanda on the sidelines of the summit.