The Government of Kenya is planning to construct a US$ 74.2m open market in Athi River, Machakos County and another US$ 42m market in Murang’a, Murang’a County.
East African Affairs, Commerce and Tourism secretary Phyllis Kandie indicated that the tendering process for the project will be done next year, and that the project is expected to be complete within two years after the process.
The open market construction project is aimed at reducing the challenges faced by famers who sell their products through middlemen due to lack of a market facility. Apart from addressing the inefficiencies in supplies, the project will also create employment opportunities for the locals.
The construction of the two open markets will also include the setting up of hospitals, banks and a recycling plant.
The market in Athi River will be constructed on a 30-acre piece of land donated for the project by the Export Processing Zone, while the one in Murang’a will be built on a 20-acre piece of land donated by the county government. The two open market construction projects will also address issues being experienced in regard to inefficiencies in market supplies.
Agriculture is one of the largest contributors to Kenya’s gross domestic product. Farmers have for a long time been at the mercy of middlemen who buy their farm products at a cheaper price and then sell them at a higher price. This has made most farmers receive less for their produce even though they have invested a lot into their farm works.