Kenya expressway project hangs in the balance

24th August 2018

By: John Muchira

Creamer Media Correspondent


Font size: - +

Construction of a $2.1-billion expressway between the Kenyan capital of Nairobi and the port city of Mombasa hangs in the balance following a decision by President Ururu Kenyatta’s government not to finance the project through debt. Instead, it has directed the contractor, US construction giant Bechtel Corporation, to implement it as a public– private partnership (PPP).

Infrastructure principal secretary Julius Korir says that, while the Kenya government is committed to implementing the project, the National Treasury has directed that this should be on the basis of “zero borrowing on the part of government”.

“The ball is in the court of Bechtel and we are waiting for them to tell us how they intend to finance the project,” he tells Engineering News.

He adds that, in terms of the PPP agreement, government has assigned the construction of the project to the US firm, which will source funds for the expressway project and build it. The US company will operate the expressway but will hand it over to government after it has recouped its investment by charging toll fees.

Bechtel is currently undertaking a review of the feasibility study conducted by professional services firm PwC to ascertain the cost of implementation and the return on investment before taking a decision.

Early last month, Bechtel executives met National Treasury and Ministry of Transport officials in an attempt to convince government to cofinance the project through debt.

The firm is pushing for an engineering, procurement, construction and commissioning model on the basis that it will take years to recoup its investments through toll charges.

The expressway is a critical infrastructure project because it will enable Kenya to competitively develop and expand internal and regional trade.

The 473 km six-lane expressway will be a controlled motorway, where vehicles will travel at a consistent speed of 120 km/h. It will reduce the journey time between Mombasa and Nairobi from over ten hours to under four hours.

The expressway is intended to complement the standard-gauge railway line in the Nairobi–Mombasa corridor and help transform it into a vibrant and continuous economic zone.

Edited by Martin Zhuwakinyu
Creamer Media Senior Deputy Editor



Schauenburg SmartMine IoT
Schauenburg SmartMine IoT

SmartMine IoT has been developed with the mining industry in mind, to provides our customers with powerful business intelligence and data modelling...

Stewarts & Lloyds
Stewarts & Lloyds

Stewarts & Lloyds today supplies steel and tube, pipe and fittings, valves, pumps, irrigation, fencing, profiling and roofing products. The cash...


Latest Multimedia

sponsored by

Photo of Martin Creamer
On-The-Air (01/03/2024)
1st March 2024 By: Martin Creamer
Magazine video image
Magazine round up | 01 March 2024
1st March 2024

Option 1 (equivalent of R125 a month):

Receive a weekly copy of Creamer Media's Engineering News & Mining Weekly magazine
(print copy for those in South Africa and e-magazine for those outside of South Africa)
Receive daily email newsletters
Access to full search results
Access archive of magazine back copies
Access to Projects in Progress
Access to ONE Research Report of your choice in PDF format

Option 2 (equivalent of R375 a month):

All benefits from Option 1
Access to Creamer Media's Research Channel Africa for ALL Research Reports, in PDF format, on various industrial and mining sectors including Electricity; Water; Energy Transition; Hydrogen; Roads, Rail and Ports; Coal; Gold; Platinum; Battery Metals; etc.

Already a subscriber?

Forgotten your password?







sq:0.162 0.196s - 88pq - 2rq
Subscribe Now