The Star (Nairobi)

18 January 2013

Somalia: Kenyan Manufacturers Eyeing Somalia Market

KENYA'S business community is raring to venture into Somalia as soon as security threats are minimized to acceptable levels for investors to feel their businesses would survive.

Kenya Association of Manufacturers chairman Polycarp Igathe says the ongoing stabilization of Somalia's security is a boost to Kenya's ambitions to expand into that country.

"We are ready to invest in Somalia especially in the infrastructure sectors and manufacturing and we hope the basic state structures are put in place soon," said Igathe.

He was speaking after a meeting with the Chief of Defense Forces General Julius Karangi, who assured them that the Alshabaab threat has been sufficiently minimized.

"We have no piracy on our coast anymore and business is flowing as evidenced by the arrival of three cruise ships in Mombasa recently," Karangi said "As one of the tourists on those cruise ships said, Kenya is paradise, and I would like us to keep it that way.

He said Kenyan security forces intend to keep the coast safe by all mean, describing the KDF incursion into Somalia as part of the many deliberate efforts to ensure security is maintained.

Kenya Defense Forces liberated the southern parts of Somalia from Alshabaab strangle hold and captured their headquarters in Kismayu.

Somalia has been in civil strive for the last 21 years since the fall of president Siad Barre, which triggered civil strive and emergence terrorist groups keen on controlling the country.

According to Igathe Kenya stands to gain greatly from reconstruction of Somalia through export of goods services and establishment of industries there.

The current Somali government is yet to gain full control of governance and is yet to create administrative structures beyond the main towns where UN sponsored peace keepers are stationed.

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