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Economy

Group set for deal to kick off building of Konza City

President Mwai Kibaki lays a foundation stone for Konza Techno City in Machakos County on January 23, 2013, during the ground breaking ceremony. FILE PHOTO/BILLY MUTAI
President Mwai Kibaki lays a foundation stone for Konza Techno City in Machakos County on January 23, 2013, during the ground breaking ceremony. FILE PHOTO/BILLY MUTAI   NATION MEDAI GROUP

A consortium that won a contract to oversee construction of Konza City will on Monday sign an agreement with the government, kicking off the development of the technopolis.

The consortium, comprising 11 firms led by US contractor Tetra Tech, is expected to lay infrastructure such as power, roads and sewerage on the 5,000 acres as well as negotiate leases.

“This is one of the most significant advancements towards implementation of phase 1. It paves the way for the actual deliverables, ranging from strategic vision, master planning to infrastructure oversight, branding and marketing,” said ICT secretary Fred Matiang’i in reference to the agreement.

The deal is worth Sh1.7 billion with payments staggered over a period of four years.

Infrastructure

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Konza technopolis will from next month start laying road and electricity networks after receiving an additional Sh400 million from Parliament, pushing its total allocation to Sh900 million.

The project is being executed through public-private partnerships where the government provides land and builds key infrastructure such as road, railway, water, telecoms and sewerage systems as well as security.

Investors will be offered leases for a period of 30 years for land at the Konza technopolis as opposed to 99 years.

A number of foreigner firms that have shown interest in Konza include Chinese Huawei Technologies, Korean electronics giant Samsung, Telemac of the US, Research in Motion, now Blackberry Ltd, of Canada.

Others are Google, Craft Silicon, Telemax Technology Corporation of Taiwan and Shapoorji Pallonji Group from India.

The consortium will conduct due diligence on investors to be awarded stakes in the technopolis. It beat five bidders for the Konza consultancy work in June last year, but negotiations over the payment dragged.

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