Planned special economic zone becoming a reality

Kenya Railways and Kenya Ports Authority officials offload cargo from the SGR train to the Meter Gauge Railway cargo train at the Inland Container Depot (ICD) in Mai Mahiu Naivasha [Antony Gitonga, Standard].

The planned special economic zone in Mai Mahiu, Naivasha is coming to fruition after Nakuru County Government built a 10 kilometre buffer zone around the targeted land.

The main objective of the plan that is being undertaken by the county and the Ministry of Land is to provide a framework to guide development in the zone.

Land sub-division around the region has been suspended as tens of investors showed interest with upcoming capital projects expected to change the fortunes of the semi-arid area.

Nakuru Lands chief officer Judyleah Waihenya said the development of the buffer zone would help regulate land use and preserve fragile ecosystems in the buffer.

She added that the plan would guide development on the buffer zone.

“The purpose of this plan is to provide a physical development framework that will seamlessly integrate development within the buffer zone and the industrial park,” she said.

Ms Waihenya added that 77 investors had been cleared to start business in the park that would be served by the Standard Gauge Railway (SGR) line.

“Tens of investors had expressed their interest in investing on these 50 acres of land and we have picked as we wait for approval from the assembly,” she said.

Ms Waihenya, however, expressed concern over some land buying companies which did not finish the tilting of land.

“Some land bordering the special economic zone has not been sub-divided but we are working with the lands department to address this,” she said.