President Uhuru Kenyatta bets on mass production of genetically modified cotton
President Uhuru Kenyatta is betting on mass production of genetically modified cotton to create 50,000 jobs and generate Sh20 billion in apparel export earnings this year as part of his final term economic revival plan.
The plan, which includes policy review and crafting of new incentive schemes, is also expected to generate 10,000 jobs in the apparel sector.
In a draft Budgetary Policy Statement (BPS) seen by the Business Daily, Treasury secretary Henry Rotich says the plan will start with the training of 50,000 youth and women to engage in biotechnology (BT) cotton production.
By the end of 2018, the State expects to have expanded acreage under cotton to 200,000 hectares, up from 29,000 currently.
“There will be policy reviews for the sector and construction of 5 million square feet of industrial parks in 2018,” Mr Rotich says in the draft BPS.
BT cotton is resistant to drought and pests. While genetically modified plants are generally banned in Kenya, the National Biosafety Authority gave a nod to open field trials of BT cotton last year.
The fact that the government is banking on it to rev up manufacturing sector implies the State may soon approve its open cultivation.
Underperformance of the cotton industry has exposed Kenya to the volatility of the international market as it has to import nearly every textile product for consumption and export generation, official data indicates.
The country spent Sh26.8 billion to import textile products in the first 10 months of 2017 or 20 per cent more than the same period in 2016, the Kenya National Bureau of Statistics (KNBS) data shows.
Among the textile items imported in 2017 were secondhand clothes at a cost of Sh9.81 billion, Sh9.91 billion worth of articles (pieces) of clothing, Sh4.21 billion of textile fibre and Sh2.88 worth of yarn.
The renewed efforts to revive the labour-intensive sector is in line with Uhuru’s four-point agenda which seeks to lift economic contribution of manufacturing to 15 per cent, up from 9.2 per cent in 2016.
Hits: 32https://farmerstrend.co.ke/president-uhuru-kenyatta-betting-on-mass-production-of-genetically-modified-cotton/https://i1.wp.com/farmerstrend.co.ke/wp-content/uploads/2018/01/cotton-farming-in-kenya-GMO.png?fit=1024%2C679&ssl=1https://i1.wp.com/farmerstrend.co.ke/wp-content/uploads/2018/01/cotton-farming-in-kenya-GMO.png?resize=150%2C150&ssl=1Cotton farmingFarming Newscotton board of kenya,cotton ginneries in kenya,cotton growing zones in kenya,Cotton in Kenya - Cotton Farming in Kenya,cotton market in kenya,cotton production,how to grow cotton in kenya,Kenya will start commercialization of genetically modified cotton,list of irrigation schemes in kenya,meru ginneryPresident Uhuru Kenyatta is betting on mass production of genetically modified cotton to create 50,000 jobs and generate Sh20 billion in apparel export earnings this year as part of his final term economic revival plan. #FarmersTrendJohn Bujufarmerstrend@gmail.comAdministratorI am a web enthusiast, writer and blogger. I always strive to be passionate about my work. I started my work at the beginning of 2013 by engaging myself with detail reading and exchanging information regarding farming with others. Since then things and times have changed, but one thing remains the same and that is my passion for helping and educating Kenyan farmers, building a successful blog and delivering quality content to the readers. The particular interests that brought me in the world of blogging are gardening, farming and livestock.Farmers#Trend