How cargo will play key role in economic recovery after corona

Kenya is currently going through a bruising cycle. From the sporadic inflation movement in 2019, to the current Covid-19 pandemic that is yet to fully show its full impact on not only the local economy but also that of the continent and globe at large.

Already, unemployment is on the rise, and the economy is still taking a hard beating and we do not know for how long.

The government is working on stimulus checks to help jump-start the economy during our recovery journey. Indeed, the ability of stimulus programmes to boost the economy quickly by getting cash into mwananchi’s hand is welcomed. However, this has to be complemented with many other initiatives.

Job creation and optimisation of existing infrastructure will be key in the next phase of recovery as we seek to create jobs, raise real wages, and bolster the various sectors that have been hard hit including hospitality, aviation and manufacturing. To the greatest extent possible, these investments should be targeted to the workers, families, and communities and the lowest end of the economic pyramid.

As the supply chain around the world are disrupted, business leaders must prepare for the effects on production, transport and logistics, and customer demand.

For a start, the country’s investment in the sea, air and rail networks provides an ideal platform to rebuild our economy and safeguard our position as the regional economic hub. The Port of Mombasa in conjunction with the now fully operational Standard Gauge Railway cargo transport network should lead in generating revenue for our country by ensuring that we efficiently deliver all the cargo to the hinterland – not just in Kenya but the region at large.

For the Kenya Ports Authority, this is the time to optimise the expanded yards and berths to handle more cargo, ride on the revamped ICT system and modernised cargo handling equipment to dominate the EAC market. The Inland container depots (ICD) should be a beehive of activity, employing and re-engaging the youth in clearing and processing the cargo for regional markets.

On the other hand, rail transporters like Africa Star Railway Operation Company should be at the forefront in offering significant cost efficiency for cargo haulage into the ports to enable the truckers and other last mile players to deliver the goods to the end users at an affordable cost. As a local feeder, an affordable road transport will definitely impact the cost of consumer goods.

Even at its […]

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