In a significant boost for the Nairobi Securities Exchange (NSE), global investment giant and the world's largest asset manager, BlackRock, has re-entered the Kenyan market after a four-year absence.

This news comes as the NSE emerges from its worst year in history and witnesses a recent upswing in activity.

Central Bank of Kenya (CBK) Governor Kamau Thugge revealed the development during a meeting with bankers last week.

He confirmed a recent encounter with BlackRock representatives, who manage a staggering $9.1 trillion in assets.

Kenya was reportedly among ten economies selected by the American multinational for potential investments.

"They had kept away from Africa for the last four years," stated Thugge, elaborating on BlackRock's decision.

"They identified 10 countries globally where they think they can start investing, and Kenya was one of them."

Thugge further revealed BlackRock's recent investment in Kenyan equities, aligning with the positive trends observed in the NSE.

A recent Market analysis shows a rebound in equities turnover, rising from Sh2.6 billion in January to Sh4.6 billion in February and maintaining a similar level in March thus far.

This increased activity coincides with a mini-rally that has propelled the NSE to a remarkable year-to-date return of 16.8 per cent as of last Friday.

Governor Thugge pinpointed the developments in the foreign exchange market as a key factor attracting BlackRock to Kenya.

The Kenyan shilling has enjoyed a sustained rally against the US dollar, gaining 16 per cent since the start of 2024.

This positive movement is attributed to a combination of factors, including the issuance of a $1.5 billion Eurobond and the successful launch of Kenya's first infrastructure bond.

BlackRock's renewed interest in the Kenyan market signifies growing confidence in the country's economic recovery and the potential of the NSE.

This development is expected to further bolster investor sentiment and contribute to the continued growth of the Kenyan capital markets.