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Economy

Govt sets 45pc local sourcing target for motorcycle assemblers

Ben Nzangi, commercial director Kibo Africa (third left) with Laikipia Governor Ndiritu Muriithi (in red tie) as Alvin Mageto. Kibo operations director(right) looks on. PHOTO | COURTESY
Ben Nzangi, commercial director Kibo Africa (third left) with Laikipia Governor Ndiritu Muriithi (in red tie) as Alvin Mageto. Kibo operations director(right) looks on. PHOTO | COURTESY | Sami Khan 

Motorbike assemblers have to source 45 per cent of parts used from local manufacturers as the government moves to tackle youth employment.

This was revealed Friday by Dutch motorcycle maker Kibo Africa Ltd when it launched its newest centre in Nanyuki, Laikipia County.

"We are now targeting to boost from 25 per cent to 40 per cent by next year as we aim to reach the 45 per cent target set by government" said Ben Nzangi, Kibo Africa's commercial director.

The firm, which is looking to capitalise on Kenya's booming demand for boda bodas, says it is already in talks with various local manufacturers to supply it with parts for its K150 range of bikes.

"Local manufacturing of its bicycle parts will be an added advantage to its cost of production as it currently imports the frame used from Europe."

Expansion

The firm's Nanyuki branch comes just months after it established a presence in the port city of Mombasa in October last year.

The directive from the Ministry of Industrialisation follows lobbying from Kenyan motorcycles part makers under the Motorcycles Assembler's Association of Kenya (MAAK).

The government and MAAK have been working on a policy to guide the production of spare parts for boda bodas.

While supporting the policy directive, Laikipia Governor Ndiritu Muriithi said his government's main agenda is to support local business growth.

"We can provide you with locally made products for this bike, even as Laikipia benefits from skills transfer to support our youth" said the county boss, adding that his administration has digitised its business registration processes to make it easier for investors to set up shop.

Ethiopia entry

Kibo said it is setting up shop in Laikipia as it eyes market entry to Ethiopia.

"We have complied with East African Community's rules of origin mandate and we also eyeing expansion to Uganda and Tanzania," said Alvin Mageto, Kibo's operations director during the launch.

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