Kenya has recently begun implementing the first stages of a Maritime Strategic Plan that is expected to strengthen maritime security.
The Kenya Maritime Authority has designed a new five-year strategic plan that is intended to address issues in the maritime security sector. Transport minister Amos Kimunya initiated the launch last month.
The plan was enacted in order to strengthen the overall maritime security of the country, but should also quicken the amount of time it takes the International Maritime Organization (IMO) to approve Kenyan ports as safe and secure. The director of the Kenya Maritime Authority, Nancy Karigithu noted that the plan will be introduced in five phases, and cost over $20 million USD.
The first phase, costing approximately $6.9 million, will facilitate the creation of a legal and regulatory framework from which the rest of the plan can be implemented. Karigithu said that one of the primary problems facing the country is that the regulatory framework used to help maritime port was so weak that it led to undesirable security practices. The new policies will include regulation of submarine cables; an apparatus for fighting maritime crime; and environmental regulations concerning the exploration for oil and gas reserves.
Ms. Karigithu believes that this plan will allow the Kenya Maritime Authority to work with all those that have an interest in making the country a more competitive player in the global economy.
“We have suffered global economic depression which has affected the region. The increase in tariff and non-tariff trade barriers have reduced our capacity to integrate regionally as desired by our political leadership,” said Karigithu.