Japan, Kenya partner on economic zone

Tempo de leitura: 2 minutos

Japan International Cooperation Agency (JICA) is to support Kenya Ports Authority in the process of developing the 7,413 acres Mombasa Special Economic Zone in Dongo Kundu, Likoni constituency. KPA acting managing director Daniel Manduku said they will construct one berth and a road on the proposed land. The authority with the support of the JICA is in the process of undertaking an environmental impact assessment of the port infrastructure of Mombasa Special Economic Zone.

Mombasa residents have been invited to share their views on the zone which would open up Mombasa to multi-national industries and employ thousands of Kenyans. “We have identified 3,000 hectares ( 7,413 acres) owned by KPA in Dongo Kundu, where we shall develop a special economic zone. We are already doing the feasibility to put up the first berth and a road,” he said.

Manduku said Kenya must start developing its own export market, because currently it stands at 15 per cent, therefore the special economic zone shall encourage private sectors to come in and set up export companies. “In developing that SEZ, we shall encourage the private sector to come and set up industries, which will create a lot of job opportunities,” he said.

Manduku said the special zone is a big opportunity to Kenyans because a typical industry will employ between 200-300 people. “One industry can sit pretty on a hectare, how many companies can be built on 3,000 hectares, do your math. Those will be very many companies that will provide employment to our youth,” he said.

In 2016, Kenya secured Sh27.3 billion from Japan to construct an industrial and commercial hub in Dongo Kundu. The first phase of the Special Economic Zone, which is expected to alter the coastal town in infrastructure and business, is scheduled to start next year.

The agreement was signed by the governments of Kenya and Japan on the sidelines of the Tokyo International Convention on Africa Development (Ticad). Japan will finance the basic infrastructure of phase one through a concessional loan of US$210.8 million and grant assistance of US$58.9 million. The deal involves the development of infrastructure, including one berth, access roads, transmission line, water supply pipeline from the mainland and a substation, drainage, power supply and a free trade zone.

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