Kenya: Govt inks fresh 500,000-acre land deal with World Bank

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Principal Secretary of State Department for crop development Kello Harsama posing for a photo with an official from the International Finance Corporation on June 5, 2023.
Kenyans | 5 June 2023

Govt inks fresh 500,000-acre land deal with World Bank

by Joy Kwama
 
State Department for Crop Development PS Kello Harsama on Monday, June 5, announced a corporation agreement deal the Kenyan Government signed with the International Finance Corporation (IFC) to solve the food crisis in the country.
 
The IFC is a member of the World Bank Group that supports private sector growth, job creation, and poverty reduction in Africa.
 
In a statement, the PS noted that under the deal, the Ministry of Agriculture had signed over 500,000 acres of land for the implementation of the Land Commercialisation Initiative (LCI) in Kenya.
 
“On behalf of the Ministry of Agriculture and Livestock Development, I  signed a cooperation agreement with the International Finance Corporation (IFC) for the implementation of the Land Commercialization Initiative (LCI) in Kenya.
 
“Through this initiative, over 500,000 acres of land will be made available to the private sector to help address the food security issue currently facing Kenya,” Harsama stated.
 
Further, he noted that the Land Commercialization Initiative (LCI) was a project aimed at making use of unutilised land in the country for food production.
 
The PS stated that the government was opening up the land to the private sector for commercial agricultural production.
 
“The LCI is a project aimed at opening up underutilised public land to the private sector for commercial agricultural production.
 
“It represents a significant milestone in the country's efforts to improve food security and agricultural productivity,” added the PS.
 
To ensure adequate availability of food products in the country, On May 24, the government announced plans to import 180,000 tonnes of sugar even as the price of the commodity continued to increase. 
 
While making the announcement, Agriculture Cabinet Secretary (CS) Mithika Linturi stated that the decision was reached despite the expectation of the millers in the country to provide sufficient sugar for consumption.
 
He added that the government had made a decision to import outside the Common Market for Eastern and Southern Africa (COMESA)
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