The Viability of Turkana Oil

Emmanuel Wa-Kyendo
Post Date: 16 October 2020

In 2012, Kenya’s oil discoveries were greeted with nationalist fervor. Pundits, officials, and their surrogates played avatar to the proposition that Kenya’s economic wants would soon be fulfilled by an oil bonanza. Some were inspired to prepare for a migration of labor and capital into oil production. Others erred towards caution. Others still expressed the nationalist wish that Kenya’s oil find would exceed that of neighboring Uganda. Kenya would soon be like Dubai, an oil wealth exemplar, and favorite vacation haunt of the well-heeled. Were their well-intentioned hopes misplaced?

In the face of global economic strife, the state of Kenya’s foreign exchange reserves is not too good. Depressed oil prices bode ill for marginal oil producers. The nation’s public budget is also not quite under control. Foreign exchange reserves are important for the contribution they make towards meeting a country’s foreign currency obligations. These are generated through export sales made in foreign currency and foreign currency injections in the form of investments and or remittances. Kenyan oil was to contribute to foreign currency earned through exports. More broadly, economic activity is an important determinant of both public revenues and foreign exchange reserves. Many hoped that Kenyan oil would have a positive multiplier effect on the economy. At times, those who spoke in hyperbole did not support their statements with statistics. I attempt to contribute to this discussion with a simple analysis by asking just how viable Kenyan oil is.


What the corona virus numbers reveal?

Annah-Grace Kemunto & Maureen Barasa
Post Date: 09 October 2020

“Fellow Kenyans…” 

These have been the opening remarks of the daily reminder of how much this pandemic has eaten into our lives as Kenyans. With the highest number of infections and mortalities in a single day so far being 960 and 23 respectively  out of a population of 47 million Kenyans, is this pandemic as lethal as we think? This blog post seeks to find out whether there is a Monday effect in Kenya like other countries across the world , how the testing sequence informs the positivity rate and what the reproduction rate means. 

To begin with, what is the Monday effect? In Behavioral Economics, the Monday effect is when the stock market returns on Mondays are usually low compared to other days of the week. Contrarywise, in terms of Covid-19, the Monday effect is a regularity where the number of coronavirus infections on Mondays are the highest throughout the week. To investigate this, we collected data on Covid-19 daily infections from the onset of the pandemic in Kenya on Thursday 12th March 2020 for the first 28 weeks; therefore, making the first day (1) of what we call the Kenya Corona week a Thursday. We recorded the daily infections as a proportion of the week’s total coronavirus infections. Our analysis revealed to us that on average, Wednesdays (7) record the highest number of cases compared to the other 6 days of the week. 


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