Industry and Enterprise Development Principal Secretary Julius Korir (in red tie) at a past function.
Industry and Enterprise Development Principal Secretary Julius Korir has said making local industries more competitive will double the number of formal jobs in the manufacturing sector to almost a million in the next two years.
Speaking when he received the New Zealand Ambassador to Kenya Bruce Shepherd in Nairobi yesterday, Mr Korir encouraged investors to consider investing in fish processing industry in Kenya. “Our focus is to progressively make manufacturing more competitive to create jobs for the youth,” he said.
He observed that the country had a virgin unexploited sea front of more than 200 nautical miles (327.8km), pointing out that out of the 9,000 fishing vessels off the Kenyan Coastline, only 30 land their fish for processing in Mombasa.
He said the Special Economic Zones being created at the Coast will have facilities for processing fish, observing that the country had launched key flagship projects that will make it an industrial hub in sectors it had competitive advantage.
Mr Korir said Kenya is creating an enabling environment to attract investments by improving the ease of doing business, building a network of competitive industrial parks and a pool of qualified and technically competent work force and investing in the development of the Small and Micro Enterprise sector.
The ministry is also establishing a fund for industrial development to avail competitive loans for investors.
Amb Shepherd said investors from New Zealand had shown great interest in supporting Kenya improve on its agriculture, especially in value addition and encouraged Kenya to seek ways of tapping into New Zealand’s technology and know-how, especially in the livestock sector.
The delegation told the PS that a successful avocado farming project in the country has been implemented through a five-year programme from New Zealand. So far 1,200 Kenyan smallholder avocado farmers have benefited under the Olivado project.
The project is helping in adding value to the fruit by getting high grade oil from avocados, getting better avocado plant varieties and access to overseas markets .He called up-scaling of Olivado project to benefit more farmers.