Gatsby Africa Highlights Report 2020-2021
We are delighted to introduce this year’s Gatsby Africa Highlights Report, which presents the progress of the portfolio we implement and fund as of April 2021. Covering eight sectors across East Africa, this year’s report also includes the work we fund which is implemented by Kenya Markets Trust (KMT) and Msingi.
We are releasing this years’ report while the world continues to manage and feel the effects of the COVID-19 pandemic – albeit with the hope a successful vaccine roll-out will enable a swift return to normal life. While COVID-19 has had a major and wide-ranging health, social and economic impact globally, the story of our sectors gives a window on how it has economically impacted East Africa. The crisis highlights the importance of ensuring sectors are developed with resilience in mind – something which has been central to our approach for many years.
WEATHERING THE STORM – PURSUING SECTOR TRANSFORMATION IN TIMES OF THE COVID-19 PANDEMIC
This report details how COVID-19 has impacted our sectors differently and how we have responded or helped governments to respond. Our teams initially gathered data to understand the likely impact and assessed the specific needs of the sectors we support. This involved coordinating with governments and the donor community, as well as listening closely to our partners in the private sector. We updated sector players regularly with relevant data to support their decision-making and in some cases we provided some specific assistance to protect businesses and workers.
Whilst the economies of East Africa have started to recover, they continue to underperform against their pre-pandemic growth trajectories. Overall, the pandemic has exposed how urgently East Africa needs to rapidly grow labour intensive sectors that are competitive and resilient to shocks. The region does not just need economic growth – it needs resilient and inclusive growth.