President Uhuru Kenyatta and Ethiopia Prime Minister Dr. Abiy Ahmed Wednesday commissioned the One Stop Border Post (OSBP) in Moyale, Marsabit County.
During the commissioning of the Moyale One Stop Border Post (OSBP) President Kenyatta and Prime Minister Abiy Ahmed said the project is a major milestone in the bilateral relations between the two countries. It will significantly ease the movement of goods and services across the common boarder, thus contribute to enhanced people to people interaction and increase the volume of trade between the two countries.
“Today marks yet another important milestone in the excellent relations that exist between our two nations. Indeed, with the completion of this border post the two countries have demonstrated the political goodwill to address the challenges and impediments facing businesses from both sides” The President said.
The border post provides an opportunity for the Moyale joint city and Special Economic Zone to be jointly developed into a regional logistics hub.
The Prime Minister said, “The new Moyale OSBP will help expedite movement of goods and persons across the Kenya-Ethiopia border.” He also said Kenya and Ethiopia will continue working together on infrastructure and in maintenance of peace and security along the border region.
The two leaders also inaugurated the 500 kilometer Hawassa- Hegere Mariam -Moyale Road whose construction work had been completed.
The two leaders later in the afternoon inspected the ongoing construction of the new Lamu Port- an economic anchor project for the Lamu Port South Sudan Ethiopia Transport Corridor (LAPSSET) designed to integrate roads, railways and oil pipelines in Kenya, Ethiopia and South Sudan.
The LAPSSET program is intended to provide seamless connectivity, enhance trade and logistics within the region by providing an alternative and strategic transport corridor. This will create a new regional economic growth frontier that will ultimately spur inter-regional trade and further strengthen regional integration.
The two leaders urged the technical teams from both countries to develop an MOU for the establishment of a common and shared framework to operationalize the OSBP. Part of the recommendation is need to implement the Road Transport Status Agreement of 2011 between the Republic of Kenya and Federal Democratic Republic of Ethiopia (Special Status Agreement) to facilitate cross border movement of commercial trucks, without offloading and on-loading in Moyale. It will also include ratification of a common and shared cross–border regulations to strengthen cross–border trade between Kenya and Ethiopia.
The Lamu Port is a 23 berths deep sea port located at Manda Bay. Construction works for the 1st berth commenced in October 2016 and the works are now complete. The berth is ready for operations, while development of berths 2 and 3 is ongoing and expected to be completed by October 2021.
Major auxiliary facilities such as Port Headquarters Building, Lamu Port Police Station, Port Management Housing Scheme and Port Operation Workshop are in place.
The LAPSSET Corridor Project components include: Interregional railroads, roads, Oil pipelines anchored on the Lamu Port.
The roads are at different stages of development.
- The Lamu Port Link Road (10km) construction works for the dual carriageway from Lamu port is 100% complete.
- The Lamu-Garissa Road (250KM) Feasibility studies, Environmental Social Impact Assessment and Engineering Designs competed. The tendering process for improvement to bitumen standards is ongoing.
- The Lamu- Witu-Garsen section (120km) construction works ongoing and it is 88% complete.
- Garsen – Garissa section (240.6km) Rehabilitation works and reconstruction of bridges ongoing.
- Garissa-Modagashe- Construction works (Bitumen standards) were completed and currently operational.
- Modagashe-Isiolo Road (200km) design review completed tendering process has commenced
The LAPSSET Standard Gauge Railway Line is to connect and facilitate cargo movement from Lamu Port in Kenya to Addis Ababa in Ethiopia, planned to run from Lamu to Isiolo to Moyale and onward to Addis Ababa through Hawassa City.
A Memorandum of Understanding on Cooperation in the Oil and Gas sector was signed in June 2016 between the Republic of Kenya and Federal Democratic Republic of Ethiopia.
Present during the tour of the projects were Cabinet Secretary for Foreign Affairs Amb Raychelle Omamo; Cabinet Secretary for the East African Community Adan Mohammed; Cabinet Secretary for Transport James Macharia; Cabinet Secretary for National Treasury Amb. Ukur Yattani; among other senior officials of government.