KenGen is mulling plans to construct a fertilizer manufacturing plant in Kenya, a move that would shake up the multi-billion shilling market. The plant would be located at the power generator’s Olkaria fields.
The sky-rocketing cost of inputs has been one of the biggest challenges for farmers in Kenya. This has been a source of concern as the region faces a food crisis driven partly by external factors including the war in Ukraine.
KenGen is searching for consultants to assess the feasibility of the proposed plant. Confidence is reportedly high within the company that the venture would be a success.
“(KenGen) now invites proposals to provide the following consulting services to undertake a feasibility study for green hydrogen, ammonia and fertiliser production and its pilot plant at Olkaria, Naivasha – Kenya,” the firm disclosed in tender documents.
The study is expected to offer insight into the project including timelines for construction and the size and capacity of the proposed plant.
At Ksh6,000, the price of a 50-kilogramme bag in Kenya is up 71% year on year.
A Ksh7.4 Billion loan facility was approved earlier in July by the Africa Development Bank (AfDB) to enable at least 650,000 cereal and oil seeds farmers across Kenya to access subsidized fertilizer, certified seeds and agriculture extension services. The government had earlier released Ksh5.7 billion through the Ministry of Agriculture, Livestock, Fisheries and Cooperatives in April to subsidize fertilizer prices.
“Successful implementation of the facility will see some 650,000 farmer direct beneficiaries, resulting in the production of 1.5 million tonnes of cereals and oil seeds. In all, the Facility will positively impact some 2.8 million people,” said Dr. Beth Dunford, AfDB Vice President for Agriculture, Human and Social Development.
The loan is expected to boost boost cereal and oil seeds production over the next two years beginning with the short rains season expected between October and December and into the 2022/2023 long rains crop production season.