By The Coast Reporter
Kwale Governor Salim Mvurya has welcomed investors to the county saying it offers the best investment environment and opportunities.
The county, said the Governor, has invested heavily in infrastructure, education and in creating the right environment for serious investors ready to partner with his government to transform the lives of the residents.
The Governor made the remarks at Southern Palms Beach Resort in Diani on Friday evening when he officially opened a three days investment forum, the Co-Willing Economic Development Conference 2018.
The conference whose theme is "Sustainable Development in Africa: Leading the way" is the first ever in Kenya and draws participants from Switzerland, Kenya, South Africa, Lesotho and South Sudan among other states.
"I am happy that Co-Willing group has chosen Kwale County among the 47 counties in Kenya as the launching point into the country. I can assure you that you did not make a mistake because Kwale offers the best opportunities and environment," the Governor said.
He said the county is a top global tourist destination with Diani beach having been voted the best in Africa for four years in a row.
"We have invested heavily in education to create professional skilled manpower which is an integral component for serious investment," said the Governor.
The group which made partnership with the county last year is putting up a model solar energy plant for the Shimoni community in Kwale.
The group in its investment, focuses more on ethical leadership and good governance, renewable energy, agriculture and food security, urban and rural development, waste management and implementing Sustainable Development Goals (SDGs) through skills training among other sectors.
Speaking at the forum, the Swiss Ambassador to Kenya Ralf Heckner said the investment group whose headquarters is in his country's capital Geneva, will create many opportunities for Kwale residents.
"The partnering between Kwale County and this group will create many useful opportunities for both sides and particularly for the local residents," said the Ambassador who hailed Governor Mvurya's exemplary leadership among the 47 counties.
He said that as the in-coming Council of Governors (CoG) Chairman, Governor Mvurya will have added advantage to propel the development agenda throughout the country.
"You are the incoming CoG Chairman and I think you will be better placed to unite the 47 counties, initiate agendas beneficial to the people and spearhead social development and leadership," said the envoy.
The group's Kenyan Director who is also the Treasurer Mr Patrick Kisia said when Co-Willing was deliberating on its entry into the country, "Kwale County became the natural choice because of its corrupt-free leadership under Governor Salim Mvurya, best investment policies and practices, best environment and its developmental track record"
Mr Kisia singled out Kwale among the 47 counties and, like the Ambassador Mr Heckner, said the county had been pursuing a "strong, stable, quiet and transformative development agenda"
"In education, Kwale leads the other 46 counties with a pragmatic and robust bursary scholarship programme. This will in the long run create a huge reservoir of professional and skilled manpower needed to steer the economic agenda to greater heights," said Mr Kisia.
Governor Mvurya said the county was paying full school fees for its 3310 students studying in national schools and 1440 in various universities apart from 68 students sponsored to study in universities abroad."This January alone, we have paid for more than 600 Kwale County students joining Form One in national schools. We are also paying ordinary bursaries for many students in county, sub-county and other categories of institutions" he said
Governor Mvurya was accompanied by CECs Hemed Mwabudzo (Water and Roads), Francis Gwama (Health), Mangale Munga Chiforomodo (Education), Ms Nyamasyo (Agriculture) and other top county officials.