Kenya has been named the top African country for expatriates to start a new life, overtaking South Africa in a recent survey. The country’s language, ease of finding housing, and affordable homes were among the reasons cited by expats for their preference. The Expat Essentials Index survey ranked Kenya ninth globally, placing it ahead of South Africa (28th) and Egypt (37th).
The ranking is expected to boost Kenya’s attractiveness as a destination for companies seeking to enter the African market. In addition, the country’s rising development of high-end residential units targeting high-net-worth individuals is expected to continue to fuel its position as a hub for the East Africa region and a prime investment ground for multinationals.
The survey noted that Kenya provides expats with an easy transition, particularly in the areas of language and housing. As one of the country’s two official languages, English is widely used in business, education, and government offices, making it easy for expats to communicate. Additionally, finding housing in Kenya is relatively easy, with many expats ranking Kenya 9th out of 52 destinations in this regard.
Expats often prefer to live in high-end neighbourhoods such as Kilimani, Ridgeways, Westlands, and Lavington, which are popular among the middle and upper-income class. International organizations such as the United Nations have a preference for even more upscale areas such as Muthaiga, Runda, Riverside, Rosslyn, and Karen.
Kenya’s ranking as one of the top global real estate investment hotspots, after France, Spain, Italy, and the UK, highlights its appeal to foreign investors. The country was also ranked second by Africa’s super-wealthy individuals seeking second homes. Foreigners continue to play a significant role in driving demand for prime properties in Kenya.
However, despite these advantages, dealing with local bureaucracy remains a significant challenge for many expats, with 57% reporting difficulties. This figure is still lower than the global average of 39 per cent.
Kenya’s ranking as the top African destination for expats offers significant opportunities for the country to position itself as a global business and lifestyle destination. With a growing number of international organizations setting up shops in the country, Kenya is poised to continue attracting foreign investment and talent in the coming years.
Source : Business Insider