Nairobi County Executive promises to revamp Kariokor leather market
Nairobi County Executive for Business and Hustler opportunities, Rosemary Kariuki, has appreciated the collaborative works done by the national and county governments in making Kariokor leather market flourish.
Speaking when she toured the market to identify gaps and unlock hustler opportunities, Ms Kariuki promise area residents that they will soon have an opportunity to select a variety of local leather products to purchase once the market is fully operational.
Ms Kariuki however expressed concern by the slow uptake of projects by Kariokor artisans despite getting free mechanized services.
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“In January, 2023 I will embark on mobilising the market artisans towards full uptake of the project. Governor Johnson Sakaja’s objective is to ensure support to all Micro and Small Enterprises (MSE) produce leather goods in an environmentally-friendly setting with modern technology and equipment. The decision to upgrade this facility came when economic growth was urgently needed at the height of the Covid-19 pandemic,” Ms Kariuki said.
The Nairobi City County Government had in the past handed over the Sh42 million market to Kenya Leather Development Council for equipping.
“The goal is to produce standardized goods that are competitive locally, regionally and globally. I will work closely with my Digital Innovation Counterpart to ensure automation of the leather factory. This will not only increase MSEs and the shoe market but also provide jobs, especially for residents. It is our responsibility to create jobs for Nairobians, especially during these tough times. Innovation is everything in this 21st century,” Ms Kariuki said.
Kariokor leather cluster is the biggest producer of leather products by MSMEs in the Country and in the Eastern African region.
It has also been noted that despite the huge volumes of leather products produced in the cluster, these products face market challenges due to poor quality.