Major Taiwanese news network Liberty Times Network (LTN) recently reported that China temporarily delayed the funding of the Mombasa–Nairobi Standard Gauge Railway (SGR) construction under the One Belt One Road initiative. Only half of the 470-kilometer railway project, leading to nowhere, has been completed. China has put the funding on hold due to its concern over project feasibility problems. Another reason may be significant resource waste. In addition, it may have something to do with Kenya’s debt level. The total funds on hold has reached US$4.9 billion. Critics pointed out that the SGR project was too costly and may not turn profitable in the long run. Kenya’s President Uhuru Kenyatta visited China this May, hoping to get the funding resumed. However, the Chinese Ambassador to Kenya Wu Peng told local media that he could not understand the source of Kenya’s confidence. The SGR has been labeled the largest project in half a century. Most of Kenya’s debts, that is, around 22 percent of all that it owes, is to China.
Source: LTN, July 19, 2019