Kenya Offers to Lease Land to Indian Companies for Farming Ventures

A section of Shakahola forest in Kenya
A section of Shakahola forest in Kenya
Kithure Kindiki

Kenya is among 4 countries that are set to lease out land to Indian companies for agriculture investment, particularly to grow several crops.

According to officials who spoke to the Hindu Business Line, an Indian media outlet, the African countries including; Uganda, Botswana, and Cote d'Ivoire agreed to the plan to ensure food security.

The official noted that Kenya is yet to reveal the size of land to be leased out but Uganda has promised 100 acres of land to each company that will invest in the country.

"Both countries want to have the world's best crop varieties in maize, paddy, millet, and even horticulture crops to improve their domestic production. Indian investors can put their money here with a guaranteed return," the official told the media outlet.

"The Kenyan government has agreed to lease land on condition that 20 percent of revenue should be paid as export tax," the official added.

President William Ruto inspecting his farm
President William Ruto inspecting his farm.

Kenya and Uganda were praised for the availability of natural resources, good weather, and abundant grass which allows the companies also invest in the husbandry sector.

Notably, some of the crops to be grown in Kenya are rice, wheat, mangoes, pineapples, bananas, avocadoes, and millet. The Indian companies will also invest in livestock, biogas, and fertilizer.

Besides improving the food security in these countries, the partnership will also improve economic growth. This partnership will also improve the diplomatic ties.

Additionally, the official revealed that Kenyans and the three countries were tapping into the investment opportunities through the partnership with the Indian companies.

"The driving factor for these countries seems to be a need to diversify and look beyond China which India is trying to latch on to," the official stated.

Kenyan government officials offered the land during a delegation with India's Agriculture Ministry, the Ministry of External Affairs, officials from other countries, and top Indian business leaders from the agricultural and allied sectors.

This comes at a time when the government is looking to invest in agriculture and encourage more Kenyans to join the sector. 

The government has introduced the subsidised fertiliser program to provide cheap inputs for farmers.

Deputy President Rigathi Gachagua (holding Kenyan flag) flagging off subsidised fertiliser in 2022
Deputy President Rigathi Gachagua (holding Kenyan flag) flagging off subsidised fertiliser at Syokimau Nairobi Freight Terminus on October 21, 2022.
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