In a significant announcement, local contractors have reaffirmed their dedication to forging strong partnerships with professional associations in the built environment. Together, they are set to establish an all-encompassing 5-year program aimed at enhancing capacity in construction management and improving access to finance.

The primary objective of this comprehensive program is to bolster the competitiveness of local contractors. By facilitating the exchange of best practices in construction project management and providing insights into available project financing mechanisms, the program aims to empower contractors to undertake large-scale projects with confidence.

During a seminar attended by local contractors, Nashon Okowa, Chairman of the Association of Construction Managers of Kenya, highlighted the remarkable growth of the construction industry in Kenya and the ongoing infrastructure projects across the country. However, he acknowledged that many local contractors face challenges in effectively competing against international contractors, particularly in executing large-scale projects.

To overcome this hurdle, Nashon emphasized the critical need for improved collaboration between professional associations and contractors' associations. He stressed the importance of sharing best practices and collectively addressing the obstacles faced by local contractors.

This transformative initiative seeks to unite all stakeholders within the construction sector. The ultimate goal is to increase the involvement of local entities in large-scale infrastructure projects, while also enhancing revenue turnover for local contractors. Additionally, the program aims to facilitate the registration of these contractors under categories 2 and 3 by the NCA, further bolstering their professional standing.

Douglas Ochong, Chair of the Construction Project Management Chapter at the Architectural Association of Kenya (AAK), expressed his ardent desire to witness greater confidence in local contractors from the market. He emphasized the significance of local contractors competing favorably with international players in terms of project timelines, costs, and successful delivery.

The initiative is a collaborative effort led by the Architectural Association of Kenya (AAK), the Association of Construction Managers of Kenya (ACMK), and the Kenya Federation of Master Builders (KFMB), in conjunction with other professional and contractor associations.

Eng. Maurice Owiti, Chairman of the Kenya Federation of Master Builders, drew attention to the prevailing lack of emphasis on capacity building among local contractors and the absence of collaboration among various stakeholders in the construction industry. He expressed a strong determination to rectify this situation, recognizing that it is imperative for local contractors to excel.

Eng. Owiti further underscored the crucial role that enhanced capacity among local contractors plays in realizing the vision of affordable housing outlined in the BIG 4 Agenda, as well as other national infrastructure goals.