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Economy

KPA says container terminal works on despite graft probe

 Daniel Manduku
Kenya Ports Authority (KPA) managing director Daniel Manduku. FILE PHOTO | NMG 

A Japanese contractor is on course to complete the second container terminal at Mombasa port by December 2021, officials have said, shrugging off fears that ongoing tender investigations could slow down works.

The Sh35 billion facility, which is being built on 100 acres at Kilindini Harbour to ease congestion has been under construction since January. The contractor, Toyo Construction Company, has so far covered 30 percent of the project.

“The project is 30 percent complete. We have mobilised enough equipment and personnel and we hope to finish by 2022. There will be no delays as we are progressing very well,” Kenya Ports Authority (KPA) managing director Daniel Manduku told the Business Daily during an interview Thursday.

He further indicated that unlike the first phase of the project which was completed in February 2016, phase two was well ahead of schedule.

Last week, Director of Criminal Investigations George Kinoti said Mr Manduku was one of the KPA officials grilled by detectives seeking to unravel allegation of overpricing of goods and inflation of tenders at the Mombasa-headquartered agency.

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The second terminal is a crucial facility that is expected to raise capacity of the port to allow larger container vessels to dock.

Once completed, it will handle an extra 450,000 twenty-foot equivalent units (TEUs), thereby pushing up the port’s capacity to 2.1 million TEUs.

The first segment of the three-phase project cost Sh28 billion.

It has so far raised the facility’s capacity to nearly 1.7 million TEUs from 1.08 million TEUs.

The larger berths will handle Panamax container ships.

“Upon its completion in the next three years, it will give an additional capacity of 450,000 TEUs per year. This will bring the total port capacity to over 2 million TEUs by 2022,” said Mr Manduku.

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