, WASHINGTON DC, Aug 8 – The ambitious expansion and modernisation of the country’s transport, energy and ICT infrastructure is aimed at reducing the cost of doing business, President Uhuru Kenyatta has said.
He said these initiatives are intended at making Kenya the most ideal investment destination in the continent.
President Kenyatta said one of the cardinal requisites of Vision 2030 is the expansion and modernisation of Kenya’s transport, energy, and ICT infrastructure to meet world class standards.
He said it is for this reason that the Jubilee Government is doubling the paved road network by 2017, and building a new, faster, high capacity standard gauge rail system to connect the country and other nations in region.
“On our own, and within regional infrastructure collaborative initiatives, we are expanding our sea port in Mombasa to achieve the capacity to service a growing national economy and an expanding regional market. Our international airport in Nairobi has already been expanded to handle over 20 million travellers annually,” he said.
Speaking when he addressed members of Corporate Council for Africa at Washington DC, President Kenyatta said his Government is also leveraging natural resources in the energy sector to power increased industrial and commercial activity.
“Aside from stabilising our hydro power generation capacity, we have gone all out to increase geothermal generation to meet increasing demand, and lower energy costs,” he added.
The Corporate Council on Africa (CCA) is a non-profit, membership-based organization established in 1993 to promote business and investment between the United States and the nations of Africa.
The Corporate Council on Africa includes as members more than 180 companies, which represent nearly 85 percent of total US private sector investments in Africa.
President Kenyatta said in the next three years, the country will be guaranteed of 5000 Megawatts of reliable electric power.
“In fact, our challenge is about to shift from meeting demand, to encouraging enterprises to expand and make use of our power capacity,” the President further noted.
He said the huge population of highly trained, disciplined and competitive young people has given the country a great edge in attracting investors and entrepreneurs.
He noted that this has made Kenya a natural ICT hub and that the Government has resolved to strengthen the country’s continental ICT leadership position by setting up the Silicon Savannah at the Konza Techno City, where innovators and entrepreneurs can collaborate and device nifty ICT solutions.
The President however said because of Kenya’s competitiveness and well ranking in Africa, many people forget that the country has had no reserves of mineral resources to power its development.
“The fact that giant global brands like Coca Cola, General Electric, Google, IBM and Nokia/Siemens as well as dozens of American firms have firmly set up their regional headquarters in Kenya has inspired us to reward their faith and attract every forward looking enterprise to make Kenya their home,” the President said.
He said it is because of the Kenyans desire and dedication to prosper that they have utilized every emerging opportunity that they come across.
“Progress is not an accident. In Kenya, we are doing our best with what we have,” he added.
The President told the gathering of the country’s new discoveries of viable reserves of petroleum and natural gas saying already Kenya is exporting titanium and that because of the existing plan the boon has only catalysed the country’s impetus to attain prosperity.
“As if to emphasise this stupendous hint of providential favour, we even found a huge aquifer of fresh water, sufficient to supply our national demand for over 70years- in a semi desert!,” he added – Reported by Jibril Adan (PSCU)