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Kenya to team with France to build commuter rail line in Nairobi

NAIROBI (Xinhua) -- Kenya plans to partner with France to build a commuter rail line in the capital city Nairobi, which will connect the Jomo Kenyatta International Airport and the city’s Central Business District, according to a statement issued by State House on Wednesday evening.
Kenyan President Uhuru Kenyatta said in the statement that the rail line which will be implemented in partnership with a French consortium should be ready in two years to help ease traffic congestion within the city.

Kenyatta called on officials to fast track agreements so that the project is completed within the next two years, warning that bureaucracy and government red-tape should not delay the project.

He said the government has prioritized the development of the urban commuter rail and the rapid bus transit to reduce traffic congestion and boost the economy of the city.

"Our target is to have 500,000 urban commuters moving freely daily within the next 12 months.

This number will grow to over a million commuters daily within the next five years," Kenyatta said according to the statement.

French President Emmanuel Macron said the French consortium will play its part in providing a mobility solution for Nairobi.

  Kenya to team with France to build commuter rail line in Nairobi | Coastweek

NAIROBI (Xinhua) -- Kenyan President Uhuru Kenyatta and French President Emmanuel Macron walk towards State House in Nairobi. Emmanuel Macron is in Kenya for a two-day State visit. XINHUA PHOTO - FRED MUTUNE

Macron, who is in Kenya for state visit, said he was happy with the increasing partnership between Kenya and France.


Kenya and France ink wide-ranging deals to boost ties during Macron’s visit

NAIROBI (Xinhua) -- Kenya and France on Wednesday signed four partnership deals, aimed at boosting bilateral ties in areas including skills and talents, universities, research and professional training, education and strategic infrastructure projects in Kenya.

France is committed to working together with Kenya in several areas of mutual interest, among which are trade, investment, infrastructure, security and counter-terrorism activities, said French President Emmanuel Macron after the signing of the agreements in Nairobi.

"We also want to open a new partnership on the economy; we will sign a series of new agreements in order to develop public and private partnerships," Macron told at a joint news conference with Kenyan President Uhuru Kenyatta.

Macron is accompanied on his two-day state visit by a large group of businessmen and investors who will meet with government agencies and private sector players in Kenya to explore opportunities for investment.

Macron’s visit is the first by a French president to Kenya since the eastern African country became independent from Britain in 1963.

Kenyatta said France continues to be one of the most important contributors to Kenya’s tourism sector, and expressed optimism that the visit by Macron will help increase the number of French tourists visiting Kenya.

"This is good for Kenya and for our development," Kenyatta said.

"Today, France has become Kenya’s major trading partner.

"My expectation is that France will grow into an even more important trading partner for Kenya as a result of this visit."

The two presidents launched the Peugeot 3008 SUV, one of the models locally assembled at the Kenya Vehicle Manufacturers (KVM) in Thika, about 35 km northeast of Nairobi, by French vehicle manufacturer Groupe PSA.

The assembling of Peugeot 3008 began in September 2017, and that of two additional models are scheduled to start in April and September.

By the end of 2019, Groupe PSA is expected to assemble at least 1,000 vehicles in Kenya, up from the current 480 vehicles.

Kenyatta said when the KVM plant is fully operational, Groupe PSA hopes to assemble at least 15,000 vehicles annually in Kenya for both the local and regional markets.



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