Players in the building industry have sounded the alarm over the cost of manufacturing building materials in the country as a key obstacle towards the realisation of the affordable housing programme.
They are concerned that the rising cost of building materials will adversely affect property developers and slow down Kenya’s construction sector.
Konza Technopolis Development Authority Chief Executive Officer John Tanui expressed disappointment that most of the construction materials are imported while local manufacturers are struggling to innovate and manufacture.
“The efforts to bring down the cost of manufacturing are key for any developing country. There is need to ensure we don’t only depend on imported materials yet our local companies have all that it takes to innovate and produce,” Tanui said yesterday during the Architectural Association of Kenya (AAK) annual convention in Mombasa.
AAK president Mugure Njendu challenged the government to consider tax incentives to local manufacturers to ensure quality production and boost sector growth.
“We don’t have a mandate as an association but we play an advisory role. The cost of manufacturing is still very expensive and we are hopeful that the government gives out incentives to local players to ensure they will sustain our manufacturing industries,” said Njendu.
Support for an apprenticeship, graduate internships and technical courses in universities were also identified as a major initiative that would make local manufacturing an attractive business venture.
Njendu said as the government implements the Big Four pillar on affordable housing, there is a need for local manufacturers to innovate and position themselves competitively in the global world.