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Kenya is set to embark on an ambitious venture, as it plans to start locally assembling heavy commercial vehicles by the end of this year.

Investments, Trade, and Industry Cabinet Secretary Moses Kuria made this significant announcement, ensuring that the country will gradually shift towards relying on locally assembled vehicles.

During the launch of the Toyota Fortuna local assembly line at Associated Vehicle Assembler in Mombasa, Kuria expressed confidence in Kenya’s capacity to undertake the assembly of commercial vehicles, particularly large trucks.

The move is not only expected to bolster the country’s automotive industry but also aligns with the Kenya Kwanza manifesto’s vision of creating job opportunities for the youth.

Kuria highlighted that the local assembly of heavy commercial vehicles would be a substantial job creator, contributing to the fulfillment of the government’s commitment to addressing youth unemployment.

By promoting local manufacturing, the administration aims to foster economic growth and self-reliance.

Moreover, the government is exploring the possibility of expanding local assembly to boats, diversifying the country’s manufacturing capabilities.

Simba Motors has already made strides in this direction, assembling boats at significantly reduced costs. Kuria revealed that a boat, which would typically cost Sh1.5 million, is now assembled at only Sh450,000.

Such endeavors not only make water transport more accessible but also present opportunities for businesses and entrepreneurs in the marine industry.

To encourage local boat assembly further, the Cabinet Secretary is collaborating closely with the Ministry of Mining, Blue Economy, and Maritime Affairs.

This collaboration aims to explore and implement supportive policies and initiatives to drive the local assembly of boats.

The efforts to boost local assembly are already yielding positive results. According to data from the Kenya Motor Vehicle Industry Association, the proportion of locally assembled vehicles in new automotive sales has reached a record high of 75.5% in recent months.

Key players in the industry, such as Isuzu East Africa and Simba Corporation, have contributed significantly to this surge, assembling a substantial number of vehicles out of the total sold.

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