The Ministry of Investments, Trade, and Industry has aroused discussions around revitalizing the cotton industry that bears the potential of revamping job availability in Kenya. Hinting that the government plans to revive the cotton sector to economically boost the livelihoods of farmers.
“The Cotton Revival and Implementation plan in this country is on course. This will require the collaboration of all stakeholders from the National Government, Governors from cotton-growing counties, the Private sector, and our farmers,” said CS Kuria.
Investments, Trade, and Industry Cabinet Secretary Moses Kuria revealed that cotton value chains will be lucrative across the 24 selected counties with the potential to produce the cash crop for the revival of garment manufacturing industries.
CS Kuria said that it was time counties took the lead in ensuring that farmers were facilitated to grow more cotton to enable garment factories to get the needed raw materials. During a consultative forum with top officials from cotton-growing counties and other stakeholders in Eldoret.
“Learning from the Global best practices and ensuring such partnerships are explored can only propel us as a nation as we learn from the ones that have already perfected the sector. Our aim is to ensure that Kenya maximizes the benefits of the whole value chain. We cannot continue importing garment raw materials for our industries, yet we have the capacity to produce more than enough for these factories,” said Kuria.
The CS added that the Kenya Kwanza government aims at ensuring that Kenya maximizes the benefits of the whole cotton value chain, noting that Ginning is a key focus and thus the Government is keen on setting up a ginnery in the identified counties.
“The national government is committed to ensuring the right policies are in place, such as the imposition of levies to encourage the growth of the local apparel sector, ensure cotton seed development, capacity building, cotton aggregation, and make cotton seed available for the farmers, as we seek to give the farmers options of accessing organic and non-BT cotton seed that is regenerative in nature,” said the CS.
PS State Department for Industry, Dr. Juma Mukhwana, on his part, said already the government has imported at least 60 metric tonnes of cotton seeds that can produce high yields of up to 900 kg per acre. The PS emphasized that the government is giving farmers all the options to realize revitalization of this sector, with an aim to reduce the unemployment aspect among the youth.
“We want to ensure that the locally manufactured clothes meet both quality and affordability to avoid dependence on imports, and we assure you that in a few years, all the clothes will be manufactured here in the country,” said Mukhwana.