CS Miano flags off first locally assembled electric buses

By Winfrey Owino | Apr 16, 2024
Trade CS Rebecca Miano flags off locally assembled electric buses in Thika.

Investments, Trade and Industry Cabinet Secretary Rebecca Miano has inaugurated Kenya’s first dedicated Electric Bus assembly line (BasiGo) at the Kenya Vehicle Manufacturers plant in Thika.

Citi Hoppa and Super Metro are the first operators to receive locally assembled electric buses.

BasiGo is an E-mobility company bringing the future of clean, electric public transport to sub-Saharan Africa and is headquartered in Nairobi, Kenya.

During the launch, CS Miano said the introduction of more electric vehicles in the Kenyan transport sector is part of the efforts by the government to reduce greenhouse gas emissions which leads to climate change.

“One of the key priorities of the Government is addressing climate change and reducing greenhouse gas emissions. The transport sector is a significant contributor to carbon emissions and transitioning to electric vehicles presents a sustainable solution to mitigate environmental degradation and address the negative effects of climate change,” said CS Miano.

“The Government recognises the critical role that investment such as BasiGo plays in driving economic growth, creating employment opportunities and improving the livelihoods of our citizens. We have therefore prioritised the creation of a conducive business and investment climate, with robust policies besides streamlining regulations and setting up strategic incentives aimed at attracting and retaining investors.”

During the event, CS Miano flagged off the first two E9 Kubwa buses that had been assembled at KVM. These buses will now enter operation with Citi Hoppa and Super Metro, both of whom are in the process of converting their fleet to electric buses.

“We thank the Government for supporting BasiGo as we scale the electrification of public transport here in Kenya. The transition to clean, electric buses represents more than just impact on the environment.  It is an opportunity for Kenya to establish itself as a manufacturing hub for modern EVs as well as the components that make up those vehicles. We are proud to support Kenya in taking the lead by inaugurating this first-of-its-kind E-Bus assembly line in partnership with KVM," said Jit Bhattacharya, CEO and Co-Founder of BasiGo.

BasiGo plans to locally assemble 1,000 E-Buses for Kenyan bus operators over the next three years, an investment that will create 300 green manufacturing jobs in Kenya. Already, BasiGo has over 500 orders from bus operators in Nairobi and an additional 100 reservations from bus operators in Kigali, Rwanda.

“We have proven that local assembly is viable and impactful. Now, we urge policymakers to create an enabling environment that fosters innovation, job creation, and economic growth. Together, we can chart a brighter future for mobility in Kenya and Africa," added Moses Nderitu, the BasiGo Kenya Managing Director.

BasiGo aims to locally assemble 1,000 buses over three years, creating over 300 green manufacturing jobs and has already completed the assembly of two E9 Kubwa buses that are specifically designed for the Kenyan PSV market.

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