Kisumu for the last couple of years has been doing well development wise. With the expansion of Kisumu international airport, the glory of Kisumu has continued to shine and now is a town which enjoys a city status. World class roads are being built, water and sanitation infrastructures are being developed and investment by local investors is steadily rising. Kisumu city’s future seems to be bright mainly because of the following reasons;
This is an element which plays a very vital role in economic development. Kisumu has witnessed Infrastructure development with expansion of roads, sewerage and water lines. The government has also taken steps to redevelop the Kisumu port to make it a commercial port which will significantly improve local trade in the area. The Kenya railway corporation is also planning to build a standard and modern gauge railway network from Mombasa through Nairobi and Kisumu. All these plans spell good tidings and prosperity to Kisumu city which was once old and shaggy town.
Kisumu city is currently enjoying a property boom in the housing sector as a result of ongoing infrastructural projects. The expansion of Kisumu airport and the planned development of modern gauge railway have opened up the region and more investors are flocking to the city to take advantage of increased housing demand. Growth in education as well as banking sector has lead to increased demand for housing as a result of increased number of workers who have migrated to the city to make a living. According to statistics released recently by the ministry of land and housing, Kisumu is likely to record a greater demand for housing amenities in future. This is because of strategic position of the city which has promoted it to a major business hub in East Africa region.
The East Africa Community
The East African Community has contributed greatly to the growth of Kisumu town mainly through trade. Kisumu enjoys a special location within East Africa region. It is linked to other countries like Tanzania and Uganda by a modern network of roads ,efficient water transport as well a railway line which runs from Mombasa through Nairobi and Kisumu and finally in Uganda. With the recently signed treaty which is targeted to eliminate unnecessary trade barriers among the three east African countries, Kisumu will experience a new rebirth as a center for commerce and trade.
This will give a new face to Kisumu since Devolution will bring government services closer and eliminate corruption which is a common scenario in Kenya. Devolution will ensure that measures are put in place to leverage Kisumu against its economical, social as well as political challenges .Implementation of devolution will also guarantee a conducive environment to local investors. It will give Kisumu a new path to growth by opening up this region which has a huge potential of becoming a major tourism player not only in Kenya alone but also in East Africa region generally .
Kisumu has an interesting hinterland which spreads into Uganda and Tanzania. It is also bigger than that of Nairobi and accommodates more than 30million people. Kisumu has a responsibility to protect its hinterland against other emerging cities in the country as well as helping it to develop and actualize its hope sometime in future.
With quality leadership and right policies in place I don’t see why Kisumu cannot become a key city in Kenya and East Africa region as a whole in terms of economic development.