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US-based SMEs to acquire space at Konza City

Tuesday September 29 2015

Konza Tech City has partnered with American business lobby National Business League.

Konza Techno City has been identified as one of the five 'boom towns' in Sub-Saharan Africa. The tech city has partnered with America's National Business League PHOTO | FILE | NATION MEDIA GROUP 

Konza Tech City has opened business to international markets in a partnership with National Business League, an American business lobby.

Through the agreement, US-based small and medium enterprises (SMEs) stand to acquire operational space at Konza City.

Further, the US SMEs will enable local ones to acquire development opportunities through export promotion, joint ventures, strategy alliance and direct investment.

Konza City is expected to be Africa’s Silicon Savannah, contributing $1 billion annually (approximately two per cent) to Kenya’s Gross Domestic Product (GDP) once phase one is operational.

“We have received more than 200 expressions of interest from investors both local and international, who are expected to form the bulk of the pioneer investors and partners in Konza city. We have registered good interest by the private sector particularly the telecom operators and leading banks who want to locate their data centers and other ICT investments in Konza” said John Tanui, KoTDA CEO.

ALLEGED CORRUPTION

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Konza City’s development has been alleged to be stagnant due to political interference and corruption in the procurement of the tech city's land.

Powerful government officials have also been fingered in the tech city's stagnation more than four years after it was launched.

In a letter dated April 22 to the Director of Public Prosecutions, the Criminal Investigations Department recommended the arrest of Machakos Senator Johnson Muthama and former Information Permanent Secretary Bitange Ndemo on charges of corruption.

Five years later, Konza still stinks of corruption, which might scare away international investors.

However, the body counts on the already existing international investors such as IBM, GE, Dow Chemical, Coca-Cola, and Cisco.

If successfully implemented, Konza Tech City will be a major economic driver for the nation, contributing $1 billion annually to Kenya's GDP.