Awiti wants car plant built near Mombasa port

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Nyali MP Hezron Awiti addressing changamwe constituency residents at changamwe social hall in Mombasa

Nyali MP Hezron Awiti addressing changamwe constituency residents at changamwe social hall in Mombasa on Saturday.Photo / JOHN CHESOLI

Nyali MP Hezron Awiti has urged the state to set up a motor vehicle manufacturing and assembling plant in Mombasa to improve trade and the county’s economy.

He said car dealers do not meet the rising demand. Awiti proposed the plant be set up near the Port of Mombasa to ease exportation.

“Industrialisation stalled in the late 1980s and early 90s. Re-opening of the production line will bring to an end the influx in imported goods, including motor vehicles, [which] has hurt our economy. Jobs will be created,” he said.

Awiti addressed youth on Saturday at Changamwe. The youth had asked how he intends to end the high rate of unemployment. Awiti has expressed his interest in running for Mombasa governor.

The legislator said the country does not need to depend on imported vehicle, since it has the capacity to manufacture its own.

He called for tax-free holidays to bolster Mombasa’s businesses and attract investors.

Awiti said Special Economic Zones Act enacted last year revolutionised the business environment, as it removed restrictions placed on companies based in export processing zones.

Last December, the Volkswagen Group unveiled its first locally assembled passenger vehicle in four decades during the official opening of its production line at the Kenya Vehicle Manufacturing plant in Thika.

Figures from the Kenya National Bureau of Statistics show Kenya has increasingly spent more on importing motor vehicles and spare parts from 2011 to 2014. The country earned less from exportation for the same period.

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