TaitaTaveta County dreams big with Sh43bn development plan

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Regional government banking on support of international donors to finance projects

Taita Taveta county government plans to leverage on the support of international donors including Commonwealth coun­tries in the rollout of its $ 500 million (Sh43 billion) county development plan.It began by hosting the ongoing international commemoration for the World War I cente­nary celebrations in August. Speaking when he confirmed the plans to seek the support of international commonwealth donors in the Taita Taveta Development plan, governor Eng. John Mruttu said the county will be seek­ing to harness existing ties with international partners.

Already, TaitaTaveta County in conjunction with the Taita Taveta University College, Eng. Mruttu said has formulated an ambitious master plan dubbed the Taita Taveta Vision 2020 to guide the county’s development agenda. The plan identifies flagship projects to be under­taken in key sectors which include water, land, banking, mining, tourism, education, research and development/academic delivery.

“This weekend, we shall be hosting interna­tional partners drawn from Australia, Belgium, Canada, Nigeria, South Africa, Tanzania, Germa­ny and Britain, for the World War I Centenary Celebrations,” Mruttu confirmed. “During the occasion, we shall also seek to harness the rare opportunity to seek their support in bringing to life the Taita Taveta Vision 2020 County Development Plan to a bilateral level,” he added.

Alongside the international development partners, the county is also set to sign devel­opment based Memorandum of Understanding (MoU) with private sector players such as the Nairobi Hospital which will be seeking to build a medical facility in the county.

The United Nations Development Programme (UNDP) has also expressed interest in setting up a modern business centre to promote entre­preneurship programmes in the vast Semi-Arid County.

Historically, Taita Taveta County was the place where the first bullet was fired during the First World War; East Africa campaign pitting the British against the Germans. The county to date hosts numerous First World War sites and artefacts.

As part of the Taita Taveta Vision 2030 County Development plan, more than USD$ 175m has already been mobilised from Government and county level resources with US$ 325 million set to be raised from development partners.

Specifically the county will be seeking to mobilise a USD$180 million funding purse to finance its water provision projects and USD$50million for a Land banking project. The land banking project aims at acquiring more than 1million acres from private investors for onward leasing to strategic investors.

To further exploit the county’s mining potential, Taita Taveta county will be seeking to unlock resources’ amounting to USD$ 50 million covering the development of a value chain platform and the formulation of a suitable legal framework to boost the lucrative sector.

 

The county also intends to raise USD$ 100 million to finance a tourism and bio diversity projects. On the education development front, in partnership with the Taita Taveta University College it also plans to establish an Institute of Innovation & County Economic Transformation (IICET).

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