Wednesday, 8 June 2011

Kenya Budgetary Estimates 2011-12 - What is in it for Sports?

Coming at a time when the Kenyan Government is easily finding it hard to raise revenues as well as make capital expenditure, we in the sports industry have put our lot in there too. From the Budget Statement - Fiscal Year 2011-12, as presented by Finance Minister Uhuru Kenyatta, a similar token given to the development of sport in the country in 2008-9 by then Minister Amos Kimunya makes a comeback.

Quoting the statement,
"...apart from engaging in these activities, I would also like to encourage them to nurture their talents in the realm of sports. Time and time again, our young people have made this country proud by their exemplary performance in the international tournaments in various disciplines. (... all good so far)
I believe that a clear investment in sports backed by proper management, can turn this activity, which attracts thousands of our young people into a sustainable employer. Our youth should be able to follow their dreams and establish careers in sports ( ....well put Mr. Minister Sir)
To this end, I have allocated KShs. 210 million ( 1 million per constituency) towards competitive sports for youth countrywide. This will be used for purchase of trophies, monetary award to competing teams and compensation for officials overseeing this initiative. ( ...now you sound ambiguous Sir, which sports discipline & that amount's too measly unless you hold 1 tournament per year)
The private companies under their Corporate Social Responsibility (CSR) budgets to match this amount, at least on a shilling-for-shilling basis." (...nice one throwing the challenge to private corporate firms making obscene profits but committing measly amounts to sport BUT that word CSR word just craps me out! )

Not belabouring the points above, we believe there is more that the Ministry could have done to give incentive to the sports industry. Just like we have said before (and he's also quoted), sports can be an employer of many if the right investments and management are put into place.
  • Our infrastructure has suffered considerably and one way they can aid this is by offering tax incentives to private investors willing to build stadia, sports arenas and community centres. In fact some of the KShs.210 m should go to building of community centres, since a one-off amount is more like a quick-fix but no long term work envisioned beyond that.
  • Tax waivers should be accorded to suppliers of sports equipment too to entice clubs and communities to invest in these longer term projects.
  • Still on a longer term basis, and especially with the new dispensation having counties some options for private investment through infrastructure bonds should be pursued.
  • Allow and encourage counties and local governments to introduce various preferential measures to support the sports industry. Most of the local governments have lost control of parcels of land meant for stadia and other sports centres making it difficult to move forward.
  • Tax holiday to the winning individuals and teams across the world?
    Here's a sample of what some top officials in Nigeria are doing to entice the private companies to invest in sports.
As for now, nice effort Mr. Minister, but this is to us at SportsKenya is just a drop in the ocean! What say you good people of Kenya?

1 comment:

DataMiner said...

Agreed entirely. The 1M can be eaten up even only by administration - since the boys must east something! Incentives is the way to go, but with our tax hungry govt., will not happen. KRA missed last years target by almost 200B!