Kenya has inaugurated the Kenya Shipyards Limited facility in the port city of Mombasa.
Kenya said the new yard would have the capacity to handle vessels of more than 4,000 tonnes and 150 metres in length.
According to the report, the yard is a strategic infrastructure asset, enabling it to tap into the multibillion-dollar global shipbuilding and repair market.
President Uhuru Kenyatta, at the facility’s inauguration, said, “The key sub-sectors of the blue economy, which include maritime transport and logistics, fisheries, as well as ship-building and repair, represent low hanging fruits that must be exploited.”
The report said the new KSL Mombasa Shipyard facility has the country’s longest slipway for construction, repair, refitting and maintenance.
It also has two ship-building hangers, one 150 metres long and 30 metres high and a smaller one 120 metres long, 20 metres high and 13 metres wide.
The report added that the shipyard has four main workshops — an electronic repair workshop, a marine and general engineering workshop, a fitting and carpentry workshop and a hull and superstructure repair workshop.
It said Kenya had already trained teams of specialised workers in shipfitting and welding to meet the yard’s labour needs.
Kenyatta added, “The direct, indirect and induced impacts of the Mombasa Shipyard will create many jobs, generate diverse investment opportunities and raise revenue for the country.”
The report added, “The Kenya Defence Force has been involved in developing the facility for the past two years, and it stands to benefit from access to a local maintenance hub for Kenya’s navy and coast guard.
“The facility is expected to save the country substantially in terms of the foreign exchange that goes into maintaining its ships in foreign shipyards. The new yard is one component of Kenya’s plan to boost its status as a regional maritime hub. It follows the operationalization of Lamu port in May.
“The new port’s first three berths were constructed at a cost of $367m. The Kisumu Port on Lake Victoria has also been refurbished at a cost of $30m. However, plans to revive the defunct Kenya National Shipping Line remain in limbo over concerns that the line cannot compete on a global scale.”
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