The Kenya Kwanza government has laid downs strategy to start construction work at the Dongo Kundu Special Economic Zone in Mombasa.
Trade Cabinet Secretary Moses Kuria said the Ksh.39 billion project will start by latest – March 31, 2023.
Phase one of the project will be done under JiCA loan scheme structured as a Ksh.6 billion grant and a Ksh.50 billion concessional loan payable within 30 years with a grace period of 12 years.
It is aimed at attracting a more significant share of Foreign Direct Investment (FDI) and exports and is expected to be fully operational by 2026, according to Kiyonori Matsushima the Special Economic Zone Development Advisor at JiCA.
“We are currently working to float a tender for land development in the local and international media. Hopefully, the tenders will be issued within one or two weeks and the work will start on March 31, 2023,” said Kuria.
A SEZ Master Plan was developed with support from the Government of Japan and presents opportunities for investment in value addition in Industrial zone.
According to Kuria, the main objective of the project will be to improve Kenya’s trade imbalance, investments, job prospects and administration.
Being a vision 2030 project, major activities at the zone will be agro-processing, oil and gas, petrochemical, green and renewable energy, blue economy, water desalination and service promotion.
Other activities are heavy metal and steel, pharmaceuticals, automobile industry, transport and freight logistics services, warehousing, cargo bulk-breaking and consolidation services.
The project is expected to be a game changer for the regional economy, with a free port, free trade zone, industrial park, logistics zone and public utility area, plus a 12-kilometre supporting road network.
It is one of the components of the Mombasa Port Development Project (MPDP), aimed at expanding the capacity of the port and enhancing logistics along the Northern Economic Corridor leading to Eastern African countries served by the Port of Mombasa.
These countries include Uganda, Rwanda, Burundi, the Democratic Republic of Congo (DRC), South Sudan, Somalia and southern Ethiopia, as well as northern Tanzania.
Mombasa Governor Abdulswamad Sharif Nassir has welcomed efforts to start the multibillion project.