The 2003-2007 Economic Recovery Strategy for Wealth and Employment Creation led to the establishment of the National Economic and Social Council in 2004. The National Economic Council is a standing committee of eminent persons with diverse experience, knowledge and skills. The Council is chaired by the President or Minister for Finance, in his absence.
It is the NESC that conceptualized Vision 2030 and helped to complete it in 2008. It is now working with all Government ministries to ensure that the goals and aspiration therein are achieved. As an advisory body, the Council is tasked with putting forward recommendations to the Cabinet on policies that deliver social equity, economic growth, wealth and employment creation. The NESC plays a strategic role in facilitating and fostering policy dialogue on social and economic issues.
Since its inauguration in January 2005, the Council has advised the Govermnent on policy measures aimed at accelerating the pace of national development.
Part of the result of its conceptualisation, development and finalization of the Kenya Vision 2030 leading to the renaming of the Ministry of Planning and National Development to the Ministry of Planning, National Development and Vision 2030 and the launch of the Vision 2030.
It has taken action on building a positive image for Kenya, locally and internationally, which led to establishment of the Brand Kenya Board as a state corporation in the Ministry of Information and Communications.
The NESC also advised the government to initiate the Integrated Employment Creation that led to establishment of the Youth Fund, Women Fund and Kazi kwa Vijana projects. It also advised on the reconstitution of the Monetary Policy Advisory Committee of Central Bank of Kenya and co-sponsored the introduction of Infrastructure Bonds in Kenya as an alternative means to finance Infrastructure.
Other achievements include advising on value addition on tea, cotton and textiles, hides, skins, leather and leather products, nuts and edible oils as well as proposals for an accessible and affordable health care financing strategy.
The NESC Bill has been drafted to strengthen the council.
The NESC has developed a policy in agriculture for the country to match out of “rain-fed” to “brain – fed” agriculture and is championing the harnessing of technology to exploit opportunities in agriculture. It has advised the Government to invest heavily in infrastructure through bonds that will generate resources to fund infrastructure development. The Central Bank of Kenya has already issued three bonds to raise up to Sh75 billion ($882 million).