State House has announced that President Uhuru Kenyatta is expected to reopen the Volkswagen assembly plant in Thika.
Spokesman Manoah Esipisu said in a statement on Sunday that the plant, which had been announced to be reopened earlier this year, will see the first Volkswagen car assembled in Kenya since the 1970s.
”It is evidence that we have put in place the right policies and are promoting the right environment for industry to grow, for business to grow, for jobs to grow,” President Kenyatta said in the statement.
He further said that the assembly line will deal with the VW Polo Vivo which has so far only been produced in South Africa.
”While the intention is to start operations on a small scale with the Polo Vivo, the production facility is designed to be flexible to include the production of additional models such as the luxury brands, SUV Tiguan and the Passat,” Esipisu read.
“It makes sense for this model, and Volkswagen South Africa, to lead the expansion into Africa as VW plans to create a new region for the Group in Africa.”
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Esipisu further said that affordable innovative financing packages with local banks were part of the administration’s marketing strategy.
Along with the Volkswagen Assembly Plant announcement, State House reaffirmed its intention to revive the Rift Valley Textile (Rivatex) factory in Eldoret.
Esipisu said the administration had set aside KSh 3 billion as part of its plan to significantly increase exports to the US market under the favorable AGOA exports quota.
He further said that the factory would employ thousands directly, and thousands more indirectly.
”With a planned investment of KSh 10 billion in the next three years, Rivatex will employ 2,000 to 2,500 direct jobs, with thousands of other auxiliary jobs expected in the pipeline.”