The Export Processing Zones apparel sector has registered a significant growth in the last one year boosting the sales volumes and cutting a niche in the global apparel market.

The apparel market growth is said to have tapped billions worth investment within the controlled zones and boosted employment opportunities for Kenyans.

Speaking in Athi River, Machakos County, during the EPZ Investors Forum, Ministry of Trade, Industry and Investments Cabinet Secretary Rebecca Miano said the country apparel sector had recorded 7.8 percent growth in 2023 compared to 2022.

She said in 2023,EPZ exported apparel worth Ksh146.4 billion with domestic sales cashing in sh 1.8Billion compared to Ksh135 billion in 2022.

“The Ministry of Trade is focused in growing the manufacturing sector and expanding our sales volumes especially in apparel global market.Value addition on local products will be a major facets towards the National economic growth,” said CS Miano.

CS Miano, further said that for the Ministry to realize the projected 15 percent growth in the manufacturing sector worth 10 B US dollars by 2025 and 30 percent growth in 2028,Water scarcity and high cost of power challenges are being addressed.

EPZ is geared to benefit from Northern water collector projects and subsidized power bills.

“We are looting for power subside for industries within the EPZ zone. We also look forward for consistent water supply from the Northern Water Collector once completed,” she added.

Northern Water collector is a World Bank-funded Ksh6.8 billion project that is touted to solve Nairobi’s water problems and increase the water supply to a capacity of 140 million litres of water per day.

She added that the Ministry of Trade is negotiating for four market access in Regional Markets including the Africa Continental Free Trade Area, EAC, Comesa and tripartite free trade area

EPZA Chief Executive Officer Richard Omelu said with four newly gazette Private EPZ zones, the human capital is projected to grow by double digit this year.

“The work force has grown tremendously in the last one year upto 75,000 employees.We have several new entrants in apparel, agro processing and pharmaceuticals that will increase the employment especially to the youths and women,” said Mr Omelu adding that plots owned by speculators has been withdrawn and relocated to New investors.

EPZ Board Chair person Mr Richard Cheruiyot reiterated the management commitment to provide conducive environment for both international and local investors through a raft of measures including the government incentives.


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