Kenya set to build a fertilizer manufacturing plant in two years

Africa Science News

By Lenah Bosibori

The Principal Secretary in the ministry of agriculture Dr Kiprono Rono has reaffirmed the government’s commitments to build a fertilizer manufacturing plant in the country in the next two years.

Speaking in Nairobi during the preparations meeting for Kenya to host The Africa Fertilizer and Soil Health Summit in Nairobi, Dr Ronoh said the plant is expected to reduce the fertilizer burden on farmers by at least 25 per cent.

“The government is in negotiation with private sector players, at least four of them expressing interest in putting up the manufacturing plant,” said Dr Rono.

Rono added that the challenge they are experiencing as a ministry is the fluctuation of the currency and if the country produces the fertilizer locally, it will help the country to gain.

“Kenya has sufficient demand that guarantees the return on first capital intensive investment, the statistics and the requirement for the 6.4 million farmers to grow food for this country and also for their livelihood, we are looking at a capital outplay of fertilizer alone of close to Sh 50 billion,” said Dr Rono.

Kenya becomes the second African Union member state to host the Summit since 2006 when the Summit was held in Abidjan 17 years ago.

“As a country we are proud to be the second African AU member to host this important gathering after 17 years, the 2024 African fertilizer and soil health summit is the continent’s largest this year,” said Dr Ronoh.

The Summit themed ‘Listen to the Land’ brings together over 2,000 stakeholders to evaluate the state of Africa’s soil health in a three days culminating dialogue and deal making, culminating with a high-level presidential Summit will be held from the 7th-9th of May at the Kenyatta International Convention Centre (KICC).

Expected from the Summit are four key priorities namely; Nairobi declaration, 10-year Action Plan, Soil Initiative for Africa document and Mechanism to finance the Action Plan.

The theme of the event; “Listen to the land” looks to explore the current condition of Africa’s soils with the mindset that multiple solutions – including fertilizers – exist and must be implemented rapidly to avert the worsening of situations.

On her part, Josefa Leonel Sacko Commissioner for Agriculture Rural Development, Blue Economy and Sustainable Environmental (ARBE) of the African Union Commission, said that many African countries heavily rely on imports particularly fertilizer leaving them vulnerable to market shocks.

“We all remember the ongoing Russia and Ukraine crisis and the need to be food sovereignty in Africa by raising a lot of activities to feed the 2.4 million by 2050,” said Sacko.

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