That the number of formal sector employees earning over Sh100,000 a month is growing sends a positive signal that the economy has the capacity to create and sustain high quality jobs. This is important considering the rapidly changing world of formal employment that is increasingly shaped by technology as well as high-level skills and competencies.
But commendable as this is as an indicator of social and economic progress, it also raises important questions about income inequality and what role corporates can play to reduce it while also increasing economic inclusion, both across job groups as well as across gender where pay disparities still persist.
There is particular need for policy makers to focus on agriculture and agriculture-based industries, which appear to be the worst performing among all the sectors evaluated for the latest Kenya National Bureau of Statistics data. Agriculture, despite the being the largest employer, still lags behind when it comes to the size of remuneration.
This ought to be remedied, first to attract more young people – and ideas – into the sector and also to drive economic growth as well as per capita incomes.
It will also be important to increase synergy and linkages between agriculture, manufacturing and technology sectors if the fortunes of workers are to be increased.
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