Kenya: AfDB Approves Funding for Nairobi-Nakuru-Mau Summit Highway

Existing 175-kilometre A8 road from Rironi to Mau Summit to be transformed into four-lane carriageway.

By Chriselle Moraes on
27th July 2022

The Board of Directors of the African Development Bank Group has approved $150 million funding for Kenya to support the Nairobi-Nakuru-Mau Summit Highway project. The project is part of the Kenyan Government’s First Mover Public-Private Partnership (PPP) program.

The Nairobi-Nakuru-Mau Summit Highway project is a 30-year PPP concession for improving and upgrading two main highways in Kenya - the A8 and the A8 South. These highways are in the Kiambu and Nakuru counties. The scope of the project will include:

  1. Widening of the 175-kilometre four-lane dual carriageway. Operation & Maintenance of the existing A8 road from Rironi to Mau Summit.
  2. Strengthening and Operation & Maintenance of the existing 57.8-kilometre two-lane A8 South from Rironi to Naivasha.

Both are major roads covering the most densely populated parts of the country, starting from Nairobi and crossing through several counties in Nakuru and Kiambu, traversing agricultural zones, wildlife reserves, and tourism centres. Together, they will form part of the Northern Corridor, one of the busiest trade and transport corridors in East Africa.

The US$150 million from AfDB’s non-sovereign operation lending window forms a part of a DFI tranche awarded to Rift Valley Highway Limited (RVH) (which is owned by the VINCI Group) and Meridiam Infrastructure Africa Fund (MIAF). 

In September 2020, Rift Valley Highway entered into a PPP concession agreement with the Kenya National Highways Authority (KeNHA). Under the terms of the agreement, Rift Valley Highway committed to designing, building, financing, operating, maintaining, and transferring the two highways over 30 years. 

The project will create 1,500 jobs during the construction phase as well as 200 operational jobs. 40% of the project will incorporate local labour and locally sourced materials. The project aligns with Kenya’s Vision 2030 and national strategy, which aims at supporting industrialization through infrastructure development. 

It also aligns with AfDB’s infrastructure priorities in its Ten-Year Strategy (2013-2022) and three of its High Five priorities—Integrate Africa, Industrialize Africa and Improve the quality of life for the People of Africa.

Nnenna Nwabufo, Director General for the African Development Bank’s East Africa Region said: “One major plus is that this project will improve the extremely poor safety record of the highway which has been identified as one of the most accident-prone in Kenya. In addition, direct development outcomes expected from the project include increased productivity, commercial efficiencies, and time and cost savings. Ultimately this should support economic growth and increase the quality of life of the people.“

Top Photo: Nakuru Township Road, Nakuru, Kenya (Wirestock | Dreamstime)

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