- The yard is part of a Sh9 billion livestock pre-export quarantine project at Bargoni area in Lamu West which is aimed at boosting exports of live animals.
- The port was opened by President Uhuru Kenyatta on May 22 last year.
The government has commenced the construction of a livestock export marshalling yard at the new Lamu port, Lapsset.
The yard is part of a Sh9 billion livestock pre-export quarantine project at Bargoni area in Lamu West, which is aimed at boosting exports of live animals and livestock products via the Lamu Port. President Uhuru Kenyatta opened the port on May 22 last year.
Livestock pre-export quarantine is necessary as it enables the processing of livestock commodities to attain the specification as desired by traders as per the demands of the targeted consumers.
It also helps to ensure commodities meet the required animal health standards as internationally prescribed by complying with requisite certification and other disease risk reduction measures.
Speaking when he toured the progress of the 2,000-acre yard within the Lamu port on Saturday, Agriculture and Livestock CS Peter Munya said the project is aimed at harnessing the potential of arid and semi-arid areas for which livestock production is the main source of living.
The CS said apart from the coastal counties like Lamu, Kilifi and Tana River, others such as Garissa, Wajir and Mandera will also inform a major source of livestock that will be exported through the port.
The CS who was also accompanied by Livestock PS Hillary Kimutai and other officials in the ministry said with the full completion of the port, Kenya was looking to exploit opportunities not only in export but also importing through the facility.
“One berth at the port has been allocated for use as the export terminal due to its close proximity to the marshalling yard. The design of the yard allows it to hold up to 50,000 live animals at one go,” Munya said.
The CS said besides investing heavily in the export project, the government will as well invest in ensuring animal laboratories are set up in the county to supplement those in Mariakani and Garissa to enable disease control.
The Witu satellite laboratory's facilities and accompanying infrastructure in Lamu West will also be upgraded to provide diagnostic services.
Other intended facilities and associated livestock infrastructure in Lamu include the building of standard disease-control veterinary fences, livestock holding pens with associated gates, livestock housing and feeding troughs equipment as well as water and electricity connections.
There will also be feeding storage housing, mixing machinery, livestock loading and offloading ramps, staff housing among other infrastructure.
The works on all the facilities are set to be ready before June this year.
“We expect the yard to be ready in four months because we have investors looking to export through this facility,” he said.
There are also plans to demarcate at least 30,000 acres of land belonging to the Livestock Marketing Division in Bargoni area which will be used as a holding zone for livestock that will then be exported through the Lamu port to foreign markets.
PS Kimutai said the project will revolutionise the livestock export business in Kenya.
“Apart from creating jobs in the formal and informal sectors, the GDP of the country will definitely shoot up once the export business takes off,” he said.
The PS said the country exported Sh200 million worth of livestock to markets in the middle east, adding that the figures will definitely go up with complete set up of the livestock export processing value chain.
The project design also includes the establishment of livestock holding pens with associated gates, livestock housing, feeding troughs equipment, water and electricity installation.
At the end of the marketing chain, commodities are certified to have been finished at an effectively isolated area from disease-risk sources, and certified to have been tested as prescribed by internationally agreed protocols within such areas.
-Edited by SKanyara