Kenya Association of Manufacturers (KAM) held talks with the Nakuru County Governor, Hon. Lee Kinyanjui and Nakuru County Executives to deliberate on ways to overcome current issues hampering the growth of the manufacturing sector in the county, in line with the Government’s Big 4 Agenda.
Speaking at the forum, KAM Chairlady, Ms. Flora Mutahi noted that the Association aims to contribute 15 per cent to the economy with the hope of creating more jobs for young people. She said the association is keen to see manufacturing centralized in our national and county vision towards creating an inclusive political economy.
“Last year, Kenya recorded the highest unemployment rate in East Africa at 39.1%. This should be the sounding bell we need to boost the sector to be able to churn out productive and sustainable jobs. It should dominate discussions on nation building, equal distribution of resources and poverty alleviation”, added Ms. Mutahi.
Nakuru County Governor, Lee Kinyanjui noted that the county is striving to boost its investment attraction. He said positioning Nakuru as a favorable investment destination is critical, and the best way to market the county is through testimonials from the manufacturing sector. “We have considered security and water as key priorities in the county that will help achieve the Big 4 Agenda. We are also looking to have better regulation that will encourage manufacturing opportunities in the County,” added Governor Kinyanjui.
This year, KAM on behalf of industry, launched its Manufacturing Priority Agenda for 2018 that highlights key priority agrees that if addressed, will drive the sector’s contribution to 15 percent by 2020.
These priority areas include, creating a competitive environment and level playing-field for local manufacturers, promoting exports, developing policies and institutional frameworks to nurture industrial growth, a special focus on SMEs and skills development.
KAM Chapter Chair, Mr. Jayen Dodhia noted that Nakuru County is endowed with limitless investment opportunities to be exploited.
“Manufacturing sector is critical for the economic growth of the country, however, the sector’s growth in the county is faced with multiple fees, charges and levies, water shortages, poor road network and traffic congestion,” added Mr. Dodhia.
The Government has highlighted the manufacturing sector as a priority sector in its Big four plan, to transform the lives of Kenyans through job and wealth creation.