North and Northeastern Development Initiative (NEDI): Boosting Shared Prosperity for the North and Northeastern Counties of Kenya

Kenya’s north and northeastern region is a host to 11 percent of the total population scattered across 63 percent of the country’s landmass. The arid and semi-arid region experiences recurrent droughts that create vulnerabilities for the nomadic pastoralist communities, pervasive insecurity, suffers fragility, and has been a host to the largest population of refugees in sub-Saharan Africa over the last three decades. These policy choices contributed to the significant lag in most of the development indicators for this region compared to the rest of the country. The region has huge infrastructure deficits, low literacy rates, and contributes only a modest 4.7 percent to the national gross domestic product. To address the socio-economic disparities and inequality challenges, the Government of Kenya with support from World Bank (WB) launched the North and Northeastern Development Initiative (NEDI) in 2018. The NEDI, the region’s first significant, integrated, and transformative investment, cuts across foundational sectors including energy, water, transport, social protection, displacement, and agriculture.