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Ethiopia’s maiden ship MV Abbey docks at Lamu Port, marking milestone in regional trade

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Ethiopia Shipping Line ship dubbed MV Abbey at lamu port discharging 60,000 metric tonnes of fertilizer destined to Ethiopia.

The Lamu Port has received Ethiopia’s maiden ship dubbed MV Abbey which imported 60,000 metric tonnes of fertilizer meant for Southern Ethiopia in a move that signals the East African region’s readiness towards using the LAPSSET corridor.

At hand to grace the reception, were two Ethiopian Cabinet Ministers; Minister of Agriculture Girma Amante and his counterpart from the Transport docket Dange Boru who led a high-level delegation from the Ethiopian Maritime Authority and the Ethiopian Shipping and Logistics department to mark the maiden reception alongside Kenyan dignitaries.

Speaking during the reception, Kenya Ports Authority MD Captain William Ruto hailed the reception as a milestone that proves the viability of the Lamu Port and the adjacent LAPSSET corridor.

He stated that the arrival is symbolic; regionally as it marks the significant strides that the Kenyan government has taken towards cementing a fruitful business partnership with Ethiopia.

“This moment marks not only a successful trade transaction but also a significant step towards strengthening regional integration and fostering economic cooperation between our nations,” The KPA MD underscored.

LAPSSET Director General Simon Ikua observed that the reception of MV Abby further signals the government’s commitment towards regional integration by developing a second commercial port (Lamu Port) to tap into the enormous economic potential posed not only by the northern corridor but also by Southern Ethiopia.

He further reiterated the national government’s commitment towards improving areas within the LAPSSET corridor and expanding the road network to cover the northern corridor extensively.

Ethiopia’s Minister of Agriculture Girma Amante in his remarks stated that the Lamu Port-South Sudan-Ethiopia Transit Corridor is a transformative project critical for Africa’s ambition to establish a continental free trade area, as it supports the free movement of goods, services and people across the common borders.

“Ethiopia is one of the fastest-growing economies in Africa, given the size of its population, as the second most populous country in Africa. Therefore, it is a necessity to diversify our access to the seaports,” Amante said.

A loader loading fertilizer in a lorry at the port of Lamu meant for Ethiopia

On his part, Ethiopia’s Transport and Logistics minister Dange Boru noted that the expansion of the LAPSSET corridor will facilitate movement of goods, reduce transportation as well as pose socioeconomic advantages for both Kenya and Ethiopia.

“Regional trade will greatly increase with the continued use of the LAPSSET corridor as well as there being industrial growth, job creation and a general sense of improvement of livelihoods by those living along the LAPSSET corridor,” he noted.

Lamu County Governor Issa Timamy in his remarks reiterated the county’s support towards the realization of the LAPSSET dream which he stated will significantly improve the fortunes of those living in Lamu.

. From Left Ethiopia’s Transport and Logistics minister Dange Boru, Lamu County Governor Issa Timamy, Kenya Ports Authority MD Captain William Ruto and Ethiopia’s Minister of Agriculture Girma Amante at Lamu port during the flagging off of 60,000 metric tonnes of fertilizer meant for Ethiopia.

He stated that expectations are already rife among residents over the advantages presented by the success of the first commercial shipment being made through the Lamu Port, amid continued interest among commercial investors.

“We are aware of the interest being posed by investors, who have slowly come to the realization that the Lamu Port as well as the LAPSSET corridor is likely to pose advantages in terms of a faster turnaround of offloading and transport of goods not only to Ethiopia but also to the wider Kenyan and East African region,” he stated.

Lamu County Acting County Commissioner Charles Kitheka on his part said the national government will continue to invest heavily towards making the LAPSSET corridor safe for investors and residents alike.

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Haniel Mengistu
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