President Uhuru Kenyatta (standing, right), Diageo CEO Ivan Menezes (standing, left) look on as Industrialisation CS Aden Mohamed (sitting, right) and Kenya Breweries CEO Jane Karuku sign documents on the opening of the Sh15 billion brewery in Kisumu. [Moses Omusula, Standard]
A brewer plans to construct a Sh15 billion plant in Kisumu that will create 110,000 jobs.
The chief executive officer of East African Breweries’ major shareholder, Diageo, a multinational company, Ivan Menezes, held talks with President Uhuru Kenyatta yesterday at State House, where the company announced its plans about the mega investment that will sit on 50 acres.
Construction is expected to start on July 16 and the work is to be completed in 18 months. The jobs are expected to be created from the plant’s ground-breaking to its eventual operation.
Ease of doing business
Mr Menezes said EABL was taking advantage of the policies initiated by the Government to improve ease of doing business to put up the investment, which will also give sorghum and millet farmers in western Kenya a ready market for their produce.
“It is a major investment that, besides creating attractive jobs for Kenyans, will help the farming community and through the multiplier effect, improve the economy of the region,” said Menezes.
Mr Kenyatta said the investment was in keeping with the Jubilee administration’s agenda of creating wealth for all Kenyans by ensuring shared prosperity among the citizens.
He said the process was underpinned by the Government’s agenda to empower the private sector to thrive.
“If our private sector does well, that development means that our businesses can invest in new parts of the country, and that they can bring jobs – and well-paid jobs at that – for our young people right across Kenya,” said the President.
He pointed out that in the Jubilee manifesto launched on Monday, the Government considered the progress made in laying a strong foundation and looks ahead to the next phase of its delivery agenda.
“We know we cannot have inclusive prosperity unless our sons and daughters across the country have good jobs,” he said.
He added that substantial progress has been made and that since 2013, the country has created an average of 800,000 jobs.
He said through the improvement and expansion of the road network, ports, rail, and power, the government has enhanced ease of doing business.
In just four years, the President said, more than 1,500 companies have invested in the country, with more than 20 of them choosing Kenya as their Africa headquarters.
He cited Twyford, a ceramic manufacturing company in Kajiado, Wrigley’s in Machakos, and the Sh1.5 billion Bidco factory being set up in Thika.