ICT Ministry Disburses Ksh1 Billion to Fund Mobile Phone Manufacturing

  • The government announced that it had disbursed Ksh1 Billion that will go towards the manufacture of mobile phones in Kenya.

    The fete, that would be a first for Kenya, will contribute to President Uhuru Kenyatta's Big Four pillar of manufacturing, ICT Cabinet Secretary Joe Mucheru conveyed.

    The CS outlined that the fund will be distributed to local manufacturers developing either mobile phone hardware or software.

    Mucheru, while addressing key players in the ICT industry, noted that the country imports over 50 million handsets every two years.

    The CS challenged the ICT developers to consider the growing 45.5 million mobile phone subscribers in Kenya as a ready market for a Kenya-made product.

    He explained that a reduction in the import number would "save hard currency and remove pressure on foreign exchange rates".

    Mucheru announced that the government is keen on working with firms that are interested in manufacturing or assembling mobile phones.

    "Why can’t we leverage on the skills available locally to manufacture these handsets that are suitable for our markets?" he posed.

    Synergy Innovations, along Thika Road - Nairobi, is one Kenyan company that has been able to launch a Kenyan smartphone dubbed Silk Patriot.

    Michael Asola, the company’s chief operations officer in 2016 vouched for the phone describing it as a high quality but affordable device.