LCDA receives grant of $1.93M from the African Development Bank to accelerate development of Lamu Port

The African Development Bank (AfDB) has provided a sum to a tune of US $ 1,936,560 to the Lamu Port -South Sudan – Ethiopia Transport (LAPSSET) Corridor Development Authority (LCDA). The Grant is to facilitate the preparation of the Lamu Port Project for bankability specifically, the procurement of the much needed transaction advisory services and related technical assistance; this enables the packaging of the Lamu Port Project for Investment. The African Development Bank is the host of the New Partnership for Africa’s Development Infrastructure Project Preparation Facility (NEPAD-IPPF) a Multi-donor Special Fund with financial support from Canada, Germany, Spain, Denmark, Norway and Spain and is mandated with the preparation of regional infrastructure projects such as, Lamu Port Project for bankability to enable countries to mobilize investment financing for implementation.

The signing of the grant agreement was between the LAPSSET Corridor Development Authority (LCDA) Director General, Mr. Silvester Kasuku and the African Development Bank, Regional Director, Mr. Gabriel Negatu, at the AfDB headquarters in Nairobi.

Mr. Kasuku thanked the African Development Bank’s Regional Director, Mr. Gabriel Negatu for enabling the commencement of a working relationship between the AfDB and LCDA that is geared towards promoting the implementation and operationalizing of the Lamu Port Project.

“The facility under the NEPAD-IPPF could not have come at a better time considering the construction works of the Lamu Port is ongoing and the decision of government is to enable the private sector to have a strong footing in the management of Port business in Lamu. The facility will go a long way in preparing the project for bankability and to bring on board transaction advisory services with the view of getting private sector operations on board.

Kenya is at the forefront of regional transformation and integration using the LAPSSET Corridor Project. We believe that we will strengthen investments and business within the region and make better the integration process of the region as envisioned by the AUC.” Said Mr. Kasuku.

From left, LCDA Board Member and Chairperson of the Finance and Administration Committee, Ms Alice Kirenge. LCDA Director General, Mr Silvester Kasuku, and African Development Bank, Regional Director, Mr Gabriel Negetu, during the agreement signing

Mr. Gabriel Negatu said, “The partnership between AfDB and LCDA comes at a time when AfDB is stepping up the pace by focusing on 5 priority areas crucial for accelerating Africa’s transformation. These areas include; –

  1. Light up and power Africa
  2. Feed Africa
  3. Industrialize Africa
  4. Integrate Africa
  5. Improve the quality of life of the people of Africa

Africa needs to accelerate growth and structured transformation in order to take the bulk of the population in to employment. Critical to the attainment of this structural transformation is regional integration. In order to promote regional integration, investments in both hard and physical infrastructure along with Institutional strengthening remain paramount.

The grant comes at a time when there is dire need for transaction advisory services and related technical assistance to package Lamu Port for investments. This will make the project factual to attract investors for operation of the 1st three berths and construction and operation of the remaining 29 berths.

Once completed, the Lamu Port will play a key role in integrating Africa as the transhipment Port and gateway link to the East African Region.

As a transhipment port, Lamu will serve the expanding import and export cargo base from the new industrial hinterlands of Northern Kenya, South Sudan and Ethiopia, overall enhancing regional and global trade. For this fact among others, Lamu is a critical project.