Construction of Sh428million cement plant in Kenya stalls due to too many holidays

Karsan Ramji & Sons is putting up a 700-tonne per day grinding plant in Athi River.

Kishon Varsani, managing director of Karsan Ramji and Sons, the company behind the project, said that the prevailing political environment had forced the Ndovu brand firm to halt all construction work awaiting conclusion of the presidential election.

“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.

This comes in the wake of Kenya Private Sector Alliance (KEPSA) warning that companies and investors had put on hold major decisions affecting fiancé and investment in the country until the Kenya’s political scene clears up.

KEPSA said investments worth Sh100 billion (US$ 963m) had been deferred pending return to normalcy.

“The Nairobi Securities Exchange market capitalization lost approximately US$ 2.3bn with foreign investors shipping out US$ 144m while loss of opportunities for local firms amounted to US$ 2.4bn and investments worth US$ 963m were on hold,” said Kepsa.

Kenya Association of Manufactures (KAM) added in its report that more than 53 per cent of the industrial firms had also deferred expansion plans with 75 per cent expecting a further dip in profit.

As a result it indicated the country had lost about Sh700billion ($6.7b) in the last four months alone due to political jittery.

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.

The company is stepping up its investments in the cement business with the planned construction of a cement plant in Nakuru, the second such project in a short period.

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