•Governor Bii toured the airport to assess facilities, cited great potential to increase production id horticulture, fruita, flowers, veggies for export.
Airport Airport Manager Walter Agong said they would extend the runway by 500 meters so that it can accommodate large cargo planes.
Uasin Gishu County has partnered with Eldoret International Airport to promote export of fresh agricultural fresh produce through the underutilised airport.
Governor Jonathan Bii toured the airport to assess the facilities available and said there was great potential to increase production of crops including horticulture, fruits, vegetables and flowers for export through the airport.
Airport manager Walter Agong said the runway would be extended by 500 metres so that it can accommodate large cargo planes.
“We have all the necessary facilities that can be used by our farmers to store and export fresh produce," Agong said.
Bii urged horticultural producers to utilise the airport that has been equipped to support the agriculture sector.
The facility which is more than 25 years old, has been mainly receiving imports and exporting minimal produce to the international market.
“It is clear that we have what it takes to champion for exports of our produce to the international market, what is only required is empowerment and education of our farmers on the best agricultural practices to package the best from our county,” Bii said.
The governor said the region has favourable climatic conditions that give impetus for the production of avocados, french beans, corn among other produce that is marketable abroad.
“We will work to ensure cargo planes that land at the airport carry back goods and produce from our farmers. This shall be made possible through engagements and understanding the required standards for exports,” Bii said.
The county boss said he would support the plant to extend the runway at the airport by 500 metres in order to accommodate huge planes and open up doors for international flights.
“We will work with other stakeholders to ensure the facility benefits the county. We have ready market and farmers should take advantage of this opportunity to grow the economy our county,” he said.
Agong said they will collaborate with the county in order to make sure that the airport is put to good use.
“We have a warehouse and cold houses that are crucial in preserving our produce before they are exported. The airport is well positioned to Europe and the Middle East. Several airlines have already come in and are willing to ensure that we transport enough cargo overseas,” he said.
Uasin Gishu Deputy Governor John Barorot, Eldoret Municipality board chairman Julius Kitur were among those on the governor’s team that toured the airport.
(Edited by V. Graham)