NAIROBI, Nov. 22 (Xinhua) — The Kenya Ports Authority (KPA) on Wednesday started talks with Uganda to establish a dry port in Kampala, the capital of Uganda.
KPA Managing Director William Ruto who held talks with the visiting delegation from Uganda’s Parliamentary Committee on Finance, Planning and Economic Development, said the facility to be named KPA-Uganda, a joint venture between the two nations aimed at streamlining business operations for Ugandan importers.
“We want to make doing business easy for the Uganda importer such that if you have cargo, you just go and collect it from Kampala and then return your empty container there,” Ruto said in a statement issued in the coastal city of Mombasa after the talks. “As Members of Parliament that is something that I wish you can support so that we can make the movement of cargo from the Port of Mombasa to Uganda very seamless.”
Ruto lauded Uganda’s continued utilization of the rehabilitated Kisumu Port, saying that a significant portion of oil products destined for Uganda are transported from Mombasa to Kisumu, where they are loaded onto ships for onward delivery to Kampala.
He also hailed the important role played by Uganda in terms of cargo volumes handled through the Port of Mombasa, saying with an annual cargo volume of about 35 million tonnes Uganda accounts for 25 percent.
Ruto briefed the MPs on various measures being undertaken by the Kenya government including the directive by the presidency on the removal of non-tariff barriers along the northern corridor, which serves as a vital transportation route connecting the two countries.
The KPA official updated the visiting MPs on the progress made in developing the standard gauge railway (SGR), which currently extends from Mombasa to the lakeside town of Naivasha, saying there are plans by Kenya to extend the SGR to Malaba, the border between the two countries.
He also acknowledged Uganda’s plans for constructing an SGR line from Malaba to Kampala, further enhancing connectivity and trade facilitation.
During the meeting, the Ugandan delegation commended the KPA for its efforts in the modernization of port facilities and automation of port services at the Port of Mombasa.
Source: English News