Market News

Kitengela crusher owner stalls cement factory building on election

Cement sales have been affected by election politics. FILE PHOTO | NMG
Cement sales have been affected by election politics. FILE PHOTO | NMG 

Athi River-based cement-maker Karsan Ramji and Sons has stalled plans to complete a Sh428 million mini-cement plant in Athi River citing political tensions.

Managing director Kishon Varsani said the prevailing political environment had forced the Ndovu brand firm to halt all construction work awaiting conclusion of the presidential election race.

“Everything is on hold at the moment due to lack of proper working days and too many holidays,” he said in allusion to the two-day holiday declared by acting Interior secretary Fred Matiang’i last week to facilitate the repeat presidential election.

The Kitengela crusher owners’ sentiments on political uncertainty reflect those of the Kenya Private Sector Alliance (Kepsa), which said investments worth Sh100 billion had been deferred pending return to normalcy.

In its overview report on the electioneering process and its impact on the business environment and the national economy, Kepsa said the past four months had seen Kenya lose over Sh700 billion.

“The Nairobi Securities Exchange market capitalisation lost Sh240 billion with foreign investors shipping out Sh15 billion while loss of opportunities for local firms amounted to Sh250 billion and investments worth Sh100 billion were on hold,” said Kepsa.

Karsan Ramji & Sons is putting up a 700-tonne per day grinding plant in Athi River where it will import clinker while sourcing pozzolana and gypsum raw materials from its quarries in Kajiado and Kilifi.