President Mwai Kibaki

Kenya has started construction of the KES15bn ($176m) road upgrade project that links the country with the Ethiopian border.

The 122km-long Turbi-Moyale road will provide the northern part of Kenya with more opportunities for trade and business, and is expected to contribute to a rise in the volume of Ethiopian goods traded through the port of Mombasa.

Kenyan President Mwai Kibaki said that the Turbi-Moyale road is a key link between Kenya and Ethiopia, and will have a major impact on the wider East Africa region in terms of trade and regional integration.

"Indeed, we expect that upon completion, this road will result in reduction of transport costs, shortening of transit times for imports and exports, and reduced vehicle operating costs," Kibaki added.

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The upgrade will consist of the rehabilitation of existing bridges, construction of police posts and provision of roadside amenities.

It will also include the construction of a one-stop border post at Moyale and a weighbridge to further ease the transport and trade between the two countries.

"The 122km-long Turbi-Moyale road will provide the northern part of Kenya with more opportunities for trade and business."

The Turbi-Moyale road is the last Kenyan section of the Trans-Africa Highway Corridor and the third phase of the Isiolo-Moyale Road Corridor, which is currently being upgraded to bitumen standards by the government with support from the African Development Bank (ADB).

The Kenyan section of the corridor begins at the Tanzanian border of Namanga, runs through Nairobi, Thika Super Highway-Isiolo, Marsabit and ends at Moyale, by the Ethiopian border.

President Kibaki said that an efficient road network plays a vital role in the maintenance of law and order, and the government will continue to give special priority to the rehabilitation and construction of the roads.

Kenya is currently undertaking the construction of 70,000km of roads in various parts of the country.

Image: Kenyan President Mwai Kibaki launches construction on the Turbi-Moyale road, a critical link to improve trade and business between Kenya and Ethiopia. Photo: courtesy of State House, Nairobi Kenya.