Kenya: Computer Imports Up 76 Percent


Personal computer shipments into the East African market expanded by 76 per cent in the first quarter of 2011 even as the worldwide market shrunk.

A recent report by market research company IDC shows that global PC shipments declined by 3.2 per cent year-on-year during the first three months of 2011 and the overall African PC market grew by a marginal 3 per cent.

Kenya took the lion's share of the imports, growing by 107 per cent year-on-year from 43,562 PCs in the first quarter of 2010 to 90,451 pieces in the same period in 2011.

IDC said growth in the first quarter of 2011 was fuelled by a healthy demand for notebooks.

"This was supported by the resumption of commercial demand and strong advertising and promotion efforts by vendors, as well as their efforts to find new distribution channels and strengthen existing ones," IDC East Africa analyst Stanley Kamanguya said.

He added: "This helped to stymie unofficial (gray market) shipments."

Uganda imported 17,776 PCs in the period under review from 9,393 last year -- an 89 per cent growth.