Professor to help overhaul Kenyan insolvency law

A University of Wolverhampton professor is working with the Kenyan government to overhaul insolvency legislation in the country.

Professor Peter Walton has been nominated by the World Bank to work as a consultant, reviewing and updating laws to assist businesses in Kenya and support future economic investment.

Working directly with the Attorney General’s office, Professor Walton is looking at different insolvency and rescue procedures and making recommendations.

Professor Walton, who is a Professor of Insolvency Law at Wolverhampton Law School, said: “In Kenya, there has historically been no real system for dealing with distressed companies with the consequence that they are more likely to go into liquidation. Not all businesses can be turned around, but where they can be we need a mechanism to do so.

“The main issue is that the country has until now, adopted an outdated version of UK insolvency law dating from the 1940s, which is no longer fit for purpose. I am looking at existing legislation and making recommendations on how this may be updated in order to allow for more positive future outcomes. It is important to be sympathetic to the Kenyan circumstances, and not to just cut and paste UK laws. A good system is crucial to help turn troubled businesses around and to ensure external economic investment continues.”

The year-long project started in September and Professor Walton will spend time in Kenya.

Professor Walton will also be chairing a session on business rescue at an Africa Round Table event organised by the World Bank and INSOL International in Mauritius later this month.

Professor Walton’s expertise is internationally-renowned. He has conducted several large empirical research projects on behalf of the UK Government and insolvency practitioner profession. His research has been relied upon by the UK Supreme Court, been cited in Parliament on several occasions and has been the subject of House of Commons’ Early Day Motions.

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