Nairobi water and electricity expo takes off

Wednesday February 3 2016

Soul marketing manager Mohammed Attia (in white shirt), the Water and Irrigation Cabinet Secretary Eugene Wamalwa (centre) and Egypt's ambassador to Kenya Mahmoud Talaat during the official opening session of the Water, Electricity and Power Expo (WEPEX) in Nairobi on February 2, 2016. PHOTO | SALATON NJAU  

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Water and electricity industry stakeholders are converging in Nairobi to showcase the latest technology and explore opportunities in the sector.

The three day event is expected to attract 4,000 delegates in Kenya’s largest Water, Electricity and power Expo with ten countries registered to participate.

While officiating the opening of the Expo, Water and Irrigation Cabinet Secretary Eugene Wamalwa said Kenya offers many opportunities in the water and electricity sectors with potential of high returns for investors.

“The current demand for water and electricity in Kenya is high due to the growing population and the increased urbanization. There are huge opportunities for those seeking to invest in these two utilities in both generation and supply and you are all welcome to explore them. The government alone cannot meet these needs and we need partnership with the private sector and investors as well,” Mr Wamalwa told delegates.

Water demand

He said the government will require additional Sh1.5 trillion or 100 billion every year to meet the water demands for all by 2030 as stated in the Sustainable Development Goals. Currently, the government allocates Sh40 billion annually for water and irrigation.

Investors from Egypt made a majority of delegation led by the Country’s Ambassador to Kenya Mahmoud Ali Dalaat.

The Egyptian envoy urged for the formation of a direct shipping route from Alexandria to Mombasa to boost trade ties between the two countries.

“Kenya and Egypt trade goods worth USD 500 million while we have to ship goods all the way to Singapore or Emirates first which is very expensive. We need to find a direct route to ensure we can reach Kenya easily and boost this trade volumes to double in three years,” Mr Suleiman said.

The Expo concludes on Thursday with several partnerships expected to be signed including clean energy supply and water treatments in counties.