Nairobi Gate Opens 1st Special Economic Zone With Gazetted Customs Control Area

NAIROBI, Kenya, Nov 15 – Nairobi Gate Industrial Park yesterday opened the first Special Economic Zone (SEZ) with a gazetted customs control area in East Africa.

The consolidation will allow businesses operating from the facility to access a one-stop shop for regulatory agencies, including the Kenya Revenue Authority, Kenya Ports Authority, Customs, and the Special Economic Zones Authority (SEZA).

State Department for Investment Promotion Principal Secretary Abubakar Hassan Abubakar underscored the importance of industrial parks in driving investment within the country in addition to accelerating manufacturing.

Abubakar added that the industrial park has already created 434 direct and indirect jobs and is expected to generate at least 10,000 job opportunities as it progresses.

“This inauguration is in alignment with the Kenyan government’s vision and commitment to developing and implementing investment policies, and to coordinate the promotion of private investment into the Kenyan economy, including both foreign and domestic investment,” Abubakar said.

“It signals to us, and to the world at large, that Kenya remains an attractive investment destination,” he added.

Developed by Improvon Group, Nairobi Gate SEZ was designed to align with the East African Community Customs Management Act (EACCMA) requirements.

This involved housing all relevant government agencies within the zone, including revenue, port, and customs control agencies, as well as entities like the Kenya Medical Supplies Authority (KEMSA), Kenya Urban Roads Authority (KURA), Kenya Bureau of Standards (KEBS), and others.

So far, the developers of the park have invested $40 million, with a commitment to invest up to $160 million by the year 2035.

“Because the Special Economic Zone is effectively an extension of Kenya’s border for imports and exports, a one-stop solution had to be provided to house all relevant government agencies,” Dean Shillaw, Managing Director of Impact North SEZ, owner of Nairobi Gate Industrial Park, said.

“This allows us to provide unprecedented levels of ease for our tenants while allowing them to thrive within a well-planned industrial park,” Shillaw said.

“In addition to the warehousing and infrastructure, we have also installed multiple state-of-the-art weigh bridges, customs-controlled gatehouses and other security measures that will allow the zone to operate as a fully functional and comprisable area.”

Nairobi Gate offers a ‘built to suit’ concept in response to the demand for flexible, grade A light-industrial properties.

It provides access, efficient truck circulation, ample loading facilities, multiple roller shutter doors, and height for pallet storage capacity.

The development is ideal for accommodating international warehousing, distribution, and manufacturing businesses, as well as local entities specializing in high-value items like pharmaceuticals, medical equipment, electronics, engineering components, FMCG, and cold-chain storage.

Strategically aligned with Nairobi’s 2030 spatial development plan, Nairobi Gate offers turnkey projects ranging from mini units of 5,000 square feet to warehouses of 400,000 square feet, along with land sale options.

“As SEZA, we believe that the Nairobi Gate Industrial Park represents the flagship SEZ that will unlock significant economic growth opportunities and create multiple jobs, positioning Kenya to compete not only regionally but on the international stage as a manufacturing destination of choice,” Kenneth Chelule, CEO of SEZA, said.