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Government Secures Land for Special Economic Zone

The National government has secured 1,000 acres of land to establish a Special Economic Zone (SEZ) in Kisumu.

The land, hived off from the collapsed Miwani Sugar Company nucleus sets in motion the process of setting up the proposed Special Economic Zone (SEZ) which has been on the cards for over three years.

The Industrialization Chief Administrative Secretary (CAS) David Osiany, said the process of transferring the land to the SEZ was at an advanced stage.

“We have made progress on this matter and it is now before the Cabinet for approval after which we shall go ahead to establish the zone,” he said.

Initially the SEZ was set to be established at Ombeyi in Muhoroni Sub-county but the initiative met resistance from the community who claimed a stake on the earmarked land.

Industrialization Chief Administrative Secretary (CAS) David Osiany tours the collapsed Miwani Sugar Factory in Kisumu. Photo by Chris Mahandara

Osiany said the new location was ideal given its proximity to Miwani Sugar Factory and existing infrastructure in the area.

“With plans to revive this factory on course, we expect it to benefit immensely from the SEZ amongst other sectors that will come on board,” he said.

He said once completed, the SEZ will be the only public economic zone in the western region with potential to revive collapsed industries and create jobs for the locals.

Speaking on Wednesday during a tour of Miwani Sugar Factory, Osiany said besides agriculture, the SEZ also targets energy and manufacturing sectors.

“We expect to have waste recycling plants, energy solutions and other players in the manufacturing sector once the SEZ is operationalized,” he said.

Even though Miwani is engaged in a tussle over a section of the vast nucleus land with A Private Developer, Receiver Manager Francis Ooko said the land on which the factory sits was not in contention.

Ooko said the SEZ is expected to give a new lease of life to the struggling miller with plans to revive it on course.

“We already advertised a tender to revive the factory but the court tussle over land slowed down the process,” he said.

Oooko urged the National government to intervene to pave way for the revival of the factory, which collapsed 21 years ago.

“Our daily operations are so high. Even though we manage to generate about Sh50 million per month from the nucleus, we can do better if the factory is revived,” he said.

By Chris Mahandara

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