Home » Chinese built railway an economic game-changer for Kenya

Chinese built railway an economic game-changer for Kenya

A freight train runs on the Mombasa-Nairobi Railway track in Mombasa, Kenya, on July 27, 2022. (Xinhua/Dong Jianghui)

Kenya’s 480-km Standard Gauge Railway (SGR) as one of the most infrastructural project in history. This project was highlighted as key project under the Belt and Road Initiative (BRI) for achieving infrastructure, policy, trade, financial, and people-to-people connectivity to create mobility. According to data released by the Kenya National Bureau of Statistics (KNBS) on July 6, the SGR train moved some 7.78 million passengers between Nairobi and Mombasa since its inception in June 2017. In 2021, the Chinese-build train carried the highest number of passengers at 2 million passengers, with 2018 coming second at 1.67 million passengers ferried. Furthermore, KNBS said the SGR ferried 699.055 passengers in 2017, 1.59 million passengers in 2019, and 1.29 million passengers in 2020. Using the modern rail service, this massive movement of people proved Madaraka Express is a display of increasing popularity of the SGR.

The building of the Mombasa-Nairobi SGR Project mentioned as the biggest Chinese project in Kenya said by President Kenyatta and President of the People’s Republic of China while they signing the Memorandum of Understanding on August 19, 2013. The project therefore putting Kenya on the path to industrialization with the key development infrastructure projects including energy, roads, and water, – manufacturing and value addition, which hopefully will ultimately improve the country’s import/export ratio through Mombasa and Lamu ports. Projecting the impact of SGR includes reliable and high-capacity transportation development and an increase in employment opportunities, directly and indirectly, througj industries that are coming up along the railway line development. The SGR is in line with the East African Railway Master Plan, which aims to rejuvenate existing railways serving in Tanzania, Kenya, and Uganda, extending them initially to Rwanda and Burundi, and eventually, to South Sudan, Ethiopia, and beyond. Later on, Kenya projected by 2030, SGR seen as efficient transportation both for national and regional development which enabling cheaper transport costs and faster arrival to destinations. Perhaps, it will also make integration of the East Asia Community a reality throughout the easy movement of people within the region. This has proven that the economic game changer was touted to be at both the national and local levels.

Both countries, China-Africa Cooperation through Kenya and China, will continue to cooperate on both bilateral and global issues including peace and security, health, climate change, and blue-green technology transfer and circular economy. This has been firmly said by the Kenya’s Cabinet Secretary for Foreign Affairs, Raychelle Omamo on June 15, that Chinese State Councilor and Foreign Minister, Wang Yi, reiterated China’s willingness to look forward for working closely for a positive outcome of the deepening bilateral partners.


This article was retrieved from: http://en.people.cn/n3/2022/0811/c90000-10134097.html (August 12th, 2022)

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