Benter Mwalo: From Mitumba Trader In Gikomba To Opening First EPZ In Western

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The government is set to release Ksh. 50 million to Benter Mwalo’s business, the Dada Export Processing Zone, following President Uhuru’s directive. The funds will be released under the small and medium-sized enterprise (SME) programme.

The funds are expected to largely support Mwalo’s business located in Kisumu County, which was initially started as a mitumba business in Gikomba, Nairobi. It was the first EPZ in the western region.

“I am impressed by this project that will change the lives of residents and the government we will support it by the huge contribution of Ksh. 50 million,” Uhuru said, announcing the decision to fund the business.

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He made the remarks as he officially opened the factory Monday evening. The new EPZ situated at Riat in Kisumu West sub-county is set to employ more than 3,000 people.

“I want to encourage businessmen countrywide who are able to set up such businesses to do so and I can assure you that as a government we shall support you,” the President said.

The President was accompanied by Industrialization Cabinet Secretary Betty Maina who added that the opening of the factory shows the government’s commitment to empowering local investors to do business and create employment. Other dignitaries in attendance included Finance CS Ukur Yatani, Kisumu Governor Anyang Nyongo and COTU secretary general Francis Atwoli.

On her part, Mwalo thanked the President for the contribution and assured him that when he comes back the number of those employed will shoot up to 7,000.

The launch of the EPZ in Kisumu comes a few months after the President opened the MAS Intimates Kenya, a Sri Lankan apparel and textile manufacturer in Athi River. The company has employed over 3,000 Kenyans.

The entry of the Sri Lankan apparel and textile manufacturer into Kenya has added to Mas Intimates’ global footprint that presently spans 17 countries in South Asia, North America, South America and Europe.

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The company also projected to increase its current employment numbers to 4,200 by end of the year and a further 7,000 by 2025.

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