The Natural Resources(Benefit Sharing) Bill, 2014. The Bill's objective is, among many other things, is to establish a system of benefit sharing in resource exploitation between resource exploiters, the national government, county governments and local communities; to establish the Natural Resources Benefits Sharing Authority. The bill is expected to streamline natural resource sharing between the two levels of government with specific emphasis on trickling benefits back to the communities in areas with abundant resources.

Background to the legislation

There have been numerous discoveries of various mineral resources in Kenya, such as Oil. So far, the exploitation of these minerals has been effected with very little or no benefit to the local communities. There is also increased need for Kenya to explore mineral deposits ranging from traces of oil and natural gases, coal to deposits of rare earth minerals, large aquifer of water, and coal among other minerals. This Bill is coming at an opportune moment. The Bill proposes that the exploration firms signs benefit sharing agreements with counties which will remove such projects from the realm of social responsibility and make them legally enforceable and also includes non legal benefits. This will essentially help communities living around the mining site to keep the firms legally accountable to the provisions in the agreements signed.

Principal objectives of the legislation

To establish a system of benefit sharing in resource exploitation between resource exploiters, the national government, county governments and local communities and to establish the Natural Resources Benefits Sharing Authority(NRBSA).

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