The World Bank has decided to fund the expansion of Kenya's road and other connectivity networks with a $750 million loan from the International Development Association (IDA).
The IDA funding will go toward the Horn of Africa Gateway Development Project (HoAGDP), which will upgrade 365 kilometres of the 740-kilometer Isiolo-Mandera Regional Road Corridor and 30 kilometres of spur roads.
The HoAGDP will also assist in the installation of a fibre optic cable along the entire 740-kilometer route, as well as other initiatives such as trade facilitation, border control schemes, and border post building.
Other initiatives include providing basic socioeconomic resources to neighbourhoods in the road, structural strengthening, and emergency management measures in the event of earthquakes or catastrophes over the project's lifespan.
The improved path, fibre optic connections, and basic social services are expected to draw investments, allow regional and domestic trade, generate employment, and provide access to internet-based opportunities, according to the World Bank.
“Promoting fair opportunity around the country and sub-regional linkages would improve Kenya's transition from a low middle income to a middle-income country by 2030,” said Keith Hansen, the World Bank's country director for Kenya.
“We expect this investment, which is imagined as a backbone project under the North and North Eastern Development Initiative, would make a substantial contribution to the government's efforts to ensure mutual prosperity.”
The Kenya-HoAGDP is supposed to take up to six years to introduce. It is also the first in a series of projects under the Horn of Africa Initiative to promote the construction of regional transport corridors and modal linkages.
“Regional integration is fundamental for the countries in the Horn of Africa to build employment and alleviate poverty in an equitable and sustainable way,” said Deborah Wetzel, World Bank regional integration director for Sub-Saharan Africa, the Middle East, and Northern Africa.
“The World Bank is a founding member of the recent Horn of Africa Initiative, which the participating countries launched in 2019 to expand their cooperation and produce development outcomes for their citizens.
“This new project kicks off the Initiative's implementation by filling a significant void in the region's connectivity in terms of logistics and commerce, as well as expanding regional structures to facilitate information exchange and human resource development.”
Posted on : 06 Jun,2023