Key Projects for Stimulus Effect: Economic Recovery Plan for Mombasa County

At the beginning of the coronavirus outbreak in Kenya, the Mombasa Governor, Hon. Hassan Joho, received much praise for his rapid response measures to the pandemic. As his Government continues its focus on immediate emergency needs, parallel work must begin on what the next recovery phase.

A County’s development is ideally guided by its 5-year County Integrated Development Plan. In 2018, Mombasa published its second County Integrated Development Plan for 2017-2020 (“CIDP”). The CIDP sets out Governor Joho’s development plans during his second term in office. A progress report on the achievement of the CIDP is not publicly available but most likely, the priority list has now changed due to the covid-19 pandemic. The County’s second biggest employer, the tourism industry, has all but been shut down by the pandemic and it may be a long time before it returns to its 2019 revenues level.

Accordingly, to help its residents cope with the disruptions brought on by the pandemic, the County Government of Mombasa (“CGM”) should focus on developments that will have wide stimulus effects on the County. The World Bank has published a sustainability checklist that outlines factors that governments should weigh in putting together their stimulus package, including: immediate needs, local institutional capacity, market conditions, borrowing headroom, the legacy of past infrastructure decisions, the potential for job creation, the lead time involved in breaking ground on the projects, whether government funds might help mobilize private finance to further support a project and the impact of the country’s long-term carbon trajectory (basically, whether the project is sustainable)

That said, this article is a review of the CIDP and other recently formulated development plans for Mombasa County. The purpose of the review is to pick out the projects contained in those plans, weigh them against the sustainability factors discussed above, and suggest a priority list for the County Government of Mombasa.

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