Kenya

Country Summary

2023 population pyramid

Introduction

Background

Kenya gained independence from the United Kingdom in 1963. In 2010, Kenyans voted to adopt a new constitution that introduced additional checks and balances to executive power and devolved power and resources to 47 newly created counties.

Geography

Area

total: 580,367 sq km
land: 569,140 sq km
water: 11,227 sq km

Climate

varies from tropical along coast to arid in interior

Natural resources

limestone, soda ash, salt, gemstones, fluorspar, zinc, diatomite, gypsum, wildlife, hydropower

People and Society

Population

total: 58,246,378
male: 29,091,800
female: 29,154,578 (2024 est.)

Ethnic groups

Kikuyu 17.1%, Luhya 14.3%, Kalenjin 13.4%, Luo 10.7%, Kamba 9.8%, Somali 5.8%, Kisii 5.7%, Mijikenda 5.2%, Meru 4.2%, Maasai 2.5%, Turkana 2.1%, non-Kenyan 1%, other 8.2% (2019 est.)

Languages

English (official), Kiswahili (official), numerous indigenous languages

Religions

Christian 85.5% (Protestant 33.4%, Catholic 20.6%, Evangelical 20.4%, African Instituted Churches 7%, other Christian 4.1%), Muslim 10.9%, other 1.8%, none 1.6%, don't know/no answer 0.2% (2019 est.)

Population growth rate

2.06% (2024 est.)

Government

Government type

presidential republic

Capital

name: Nairobi

Executive branch

chief of state: President William RUTO (since 13 September 2022); note - the president is both chief of state and head of government
head of government: President William RUTO (since 13 September 2022)

Legislative branch

description: bicameral Parliament consists of:
Senate (68 seats; 47 members directly elected in single-seat constituencies by simple majority vote and 20 directly elected by proportional representation vote - 16 women, 2 representing youth, 2 representing the disabled, and one Senate speaker; members serve 5-year terms)
National Assembly (350 seats; 290 members directly elected in single-seat constituencies by simple majority vote, 47 women in single-seat constituencies elected by simple majority vote, and 12 members nominated by the National Assembly - 6 representing youth and 6 representing the disabled, and one Assembly speaker; members serve 5-year terms)

Economy

Economic overview

fast growing, third largest Sub-Saharan economy; strong agriculture sector with emerging services and tourism industries; IMF program to address current account and debt service challenges; business-friendly policies foster infrastructure investment, digital innovation and public-private partnerships; vulnerable to climate change-induced droughts

Real GDP (purchasing power parity)

$263.737 billion (2022 est.)
$251.545 billion (2021 est.)
$233.799 billion (2020 est.)

Real GDP per capita

$4,900 (2022 est.)
$4,700 (2021 est.)
$4,500 (2020 est.)

Agricultural products

sugarcane, milk, maize, tea, bananas, potatoes, cabbages, camel milk, cassava, mangoes/guavas (2022)

Industries

agriculture, transportation, services, manufacturing, construction, telecommunications, tourism, retail

Exports

$13.859 billion (2022 est.)
$11.825 billion (2021 est.)
$9.709 billion (2020 est.)

Exports - partners

US 10%, Uganda 9%, Pakistan 7%, Netherlands 7%, Rwanda 6% (2022)

Exports - commodities

tea, cut flowers, garments, coffee, titanium ore (2022)

Imports

$24.406 billion (2022 est.)
$21.853 billion (2021 est.)
$17.717 billion (2020 est.)

Imports - partners

China 26%, UAE 14%, India 11%, Malaysia 4%, Saudi Arabia 4% (2022)

Imports - commodities

refined petroleum, palm oil, garments, wheat, plastics (2022)

Exchange rates

Kenyan shillings (KES) per US dollar -
Exchange rates:
117.866 (2022 est.)
109.638 (2021 est.)
106.451 (2020 est.)
101.991 (2019 est.)
101.302 (2018 est.)


Page last updated: Thursday, June 13, 2024