The Kenya Shipyard Limited (KSL) is set to be a game-changer for Kenya’s maritime industry at a time when the government is keen on harnessing opportunities in the Blue Economy.
The yard, which was rehabilitated by Kenya Defence Forces, is part of the Lake Transport revival plan as Kenya aims to reposition its military to be a catalyst for industrialisation.
During the ceremony on May 31, President Uhuru Kenyatta handed over tools of operations to KSL Managing Director Brig Paul Otieno namely; flag, company seal, company certificate and the certificate of incorporation
Following the successful rehabilitation of MV Uhuru in December 2019, the vessel has ferried nearly 60,000 tonnes of mainly petroleum cargo between Kenya’s Kisumu Port to Port Bell in Uganda.
With 93 metres of length and a gross weight of 2,500 tonnes, MV Uhuru operated by Kenya Railways can do 10 round trips for the 224-KM journey in a month.
Cargo movement has been enhanced, making transportation of petroleum products between Kenya and Uganda faster and easier.
The Kisumu yard is the second of KSL’s facilities with the largest under construction at the Mtongwe Navy Base in Mombasa.
The Kisumu port was established in 1901 and the restoration will make Lake Victoria a crucial transport corridor in the shipment of general cargo into and out of the East African region.
Inside the port, the NYS is also rehabilitating a section of the 217-kilometre Nakuru-Kisumu railway track at a cost of Ksh3.8 billion.
The port is also linked to the Kenya Pipeline’s 45 million litre-capacity Kisumu depot, to facilitate fuel transportation. The port will reduce congestion on roads where trucks are used to ferry fuel into Uganda.
It is also linked to the National Cereals and Produce Board depot for the evacuation and depositing of grains.