Agricultural Biotechnology in Kenya

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Agricultural Biotechnology in Kenya
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Introduction
Agricultural biotechnology is one scientific invention that continues to cause debates within the world. Although one country may see great benefits for the technology, another may reject it due to cultural and ethical beliefs. Within the following paper, it will be a goal to research the background of biotechnology and to determine if this invention can solve many problems within the continent of Africa and specifically the country of Kenya. It is no secret that Kenya has been under developed as well as under privileged for quite some time. In order for Kenya to develop and reach its potential of a business partner with other countries, it must find a technological advancement to not only provide for its own population but also provide substance to other areas as well. The use of agricultural biotechnology holds this promise for Kenya. We will take a look at not only the culture of Kenya but also explore the positive and negative impacts that biotechnology may have on this third world country.

Kenya’s Culture

Kenya is a republic government that achieved independence on December 12, 1963 and within the next year joined the Commonwealth of Nations. Jomo Kenyatta, a member of the large Kikuyu ethnic group and head of the Kenya African National Union (KANU), became Kenya's first President. The minority party, Kenya African Democratic Union (KADU), representing a coalition of small ethnic groups, dissolved itself voluntarily in 1964 and joined KANU (US Department of State, 2011). As of August 2010, Kenya made a referendum of its constitution and now has an executive, legislative and judicial system. The National Assembly has a number of members that are elected for 5 year terms. The Executive Branch consists of a president (chief of state, commander in chief of armed forces), prime minister (head of government), and two deputy prime ministers. The Legislative Branch consists of a unicameral National Assembly (parliament). Lastly, the Judicial Branch is considered the Supreme Court, Court of Appeal, High Court, various lower and special courts, including Kadhi (Sharia) courts. There are administrative subdivisions of 140 districts which are joined to form 7 rural provinces. Under the new constitution, which is in the process of being implemented, the primary administrative subdivisions will be 47 counties, each with an elected governor. There are now over 40 registered political parties. The two coalitions, the Party of National Unity (PNU) and the Orange Democratic Movement (ODM), dominate the political party scene. PNU membership is filled by parties representing Kikuyu and closely related ethnic groups; ODM membership ranks are filled by parties representing nearly everybody else. PNU and ODM agreed in February 2008 to form a coalition government in a power-sharing arrangement that ended the political crisis erupting after disputed national elections in December 2007.

The economy of Kenya is what one would expect of a third world country but the country is trying to make great strides in overcoming this description. The main natural resources that Kenya has are its wildlife as well as land. Kenya relies on its agricultural growth to build its economy through industrial and trading industries and biotechnology. Biotechnology can assist greatly with the economic growth of the country. As according to the Atlas Method of 2008, the gross national income per capita in Kenya was $780. Currently Kenya has a GDP of $32 billion and an annual growth rate of 5.4% as of 2010. Kenya relies on its agriculture to promote its products of tea, coffee, sugarcane, horticultural products, corn, wheat, rice, sisal, pineapples, pyrethrum, dairy products as well as its meat and meat products such as hides and skins. Its main industry types include petroleum products, grain and sugar milling, cement, beer, soft drinks, textiles, vehicle assembly, paper and...
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