China Road and Bridge Corporation will give employment priority to Kenyans when the construction of the Sh327 billion standard gauge railway starts next month.
CRBC, which has been contracted to build the railway, said the number of Chinese expatriates would be capped at about 2,500. A total of 30,000 local workers will be engaged at peak construction of the project.
“About 2,000 to 2,500 Chinese technical and managerial personnel will work on the project,” said Mr Julius Li, who is in charge of corporation and liaison affairs at CRBC.
“This translates to 10 per cent Chinese workers against 90 per cent Kenyan employees contracted for the project.”
The agreement was reached by the company and the Transport ministry, which has a supervisory role on the project. Local firms are also set to supply materials to the project valued at Sh1.5 billion, as long as they meet specifications set by the contractor.
“We will ensure transfer of technical knowhow and training programmes for professional development of Kenyan employees engaged,” Mr Li said.
Currently, about 600 Chinese workers have arrived while 3,000 Kenyans have been employed in readiness for the project.