The government is committed to expanding the viability of counties and their productivity in industry and trade with the establishment of Industrial parks in each devolved unit. The latest addition of the County Aggregation and Industrial Parks (CAIP) is in Mombasa County where key sectors have been earmarked for exploitation. CAIPs are farmer-centric and export-oriented, designed to empower the lifeblood of the nation’s small-scale farmers and producers. Speaking during the groundbreaking ceremony for the Mombasa Industrial Park, Cabinet Secretary for Investments, Trade and Industry Moses Kuria said that the industrial park will act as a host of all other 46 CAIPs as the products from across the country await shipment to their destination outside the country. Kuria said CAIPs hold the potential to elevate the entire landscape of national agro-processing, bolster farmer incomes, spark job creation, and decisively curtail the scourge of post-harvest losses. He challenged the local residents of Bonje area in Jomvu constituency to take advantage of the park and produce more, saying that there would be an assured market and minimal post-harvest losses. He said that locals will benefit from the indigenous coconut plant but its potential has not yet been fully exploited due to a lack of relevant plants. He added that the industrial park will ensure farm produce has value addition and local farmers will earn more. ‘Mombasa County is a very strategic partner in our development agenda as a country more so because of its location and closeness to the ocean. We will use the coastal region to revive the country’s economy for the betterment of our nation,’ he said. He added that the country which is the epicenter of East and Central Africa provides the largest market, a bustling hub of commerce and opportunity. The park which is a partnership between the national government and county government will cost Sh.500 million with the two governments sharing the cost equally. Cabinet Secretary for Investments, Trade and Industry Moses Kuria (second from L) is taken through the Model of the Mombasa County Aggregation and Industrial Park in Jomvu, Mombasa. Photos by Andrew Hinga He said the government plans to revive the economy of the country through the coast region adding that the African Export-import Bank (Afrexim) is rolling out Sh.150 billion to do an 11km extension of the Standard Gauge Railway (SGR) to Dongo Kundu bypass, among other projects at the Port of Mombasa. He urged coastal leaders to open up to investors who have devoted themselves to investing in the Kenyan coast noting that the government is using every possible plan to gather as many resources as possible to develop the country. He said about 30,000 jobs will be created once the park is complete adding that with the setting up of a Special Economic Zone by the county government, another 20,000 people will be employed. Mombasa Governor Abdulswamad Nassir extended an open invitation to investors and entrepreneurs beckoning them to be part of the transformative journey. ‘We boast an exceptionally skilled and youthful workforce primed to drive the success of CAIP,’ he said. He said the county is set to become a hub for various sectors within the CAIP framework, which include the blue economy value addition, abattoir, horticultural aggregation, grain and pulse excellence, nuts and seeds, among others. ‘This park will open our county to various investment opportunities that are public-private partnerships, agribusiness ventures, export opportunities, technology and innovation partnerships,’ he said. Mombasa County Commissioner Abdirisack Jaldesa said that the county security apparatus is steadfast in safeguarding all government infrastructure. He added that he would involve all the security systems in the county to ensure that government projects and other strategic installations are protected from any form of destruction. ‘We are happy this industrial park will create employment opportunities which will help young people who are idling to find work and keep off crime,’ he said.
Source: Kenya News Agency