Unlocking the Vast Potential in Trade And Tourism

The Department of Trade, Tourism, Industry and Enterprise Development is a key player in the development of county government of Marsabit. Their functions include supporting development of Trade and Tourism, spearheading the County’s industrialization through enhanced domestic and foreign investments and to support the growth of a vibrant co-operative movement.

This department is subdivided into directorates with each directorate having specific functions.


Section 1

Trade and Industry directorate

This sector is important because it’s where the residents buy and sell the commodities required in their day to day activities ranging from foodstuffs to agricultural input therefore the sector support the growth and development of wholesale and retail sector in the County.

It is also mandated with the development of Micro, Small and Medium Enterprises through provision of Business Development Services (BDS). This is achieved through provision of a wide range of non-financial services ranging from training and technical assistance, advisory services, marketing assistance etc. since the start of devolution, directorate has been constructing and establishing of modern market structures. Through the improved market infrastructure the residents of Marsabit County will have an easy time conducting market activities leading to high income and rapid development.

The trade directorate has formulated and implemented key domestic trade policies and laws which help govern trade within the County. This directorate also helps in improving the development of private sector e.g. through the establishment of the Chamber of Commerce & Industry (CCI). CCI is meant to further the interests of businesses within the County and promoting inter-county trade with neighboring Counties of Isiolo, Samburu, Wajir and Turkana. This in turn will lead to an improved relationship based on mutual understanding and respect.

The Trade and Industry directorate also deals with the verification and Inspection of weighing and measuring instruments and inspection of pre-packaged goods. It also investigates complaints relating to unfair trade practices by business people. Another function is that of attracting local and foreign investments to the County through the provision of a business friendly environment. The directorate is working around the clock to promote value addition in the informal sector especially the Jua- Kali sector by encouraging the formation of Jua- Kali associations which will help in saving cash and promote collective bargaining to its members.


Section 2

 Co-operatives Enterprise Directorate

The Co-operatives Enterprise Directorate is in charge of mobilization and development of co-operative societies, through institutional capacity building & training of staff, board members and members of the co-operative societies. This has enabled the residents to form Sacco’s and venture into small businesses. The co-operatives enterprise directorate also foresees the regulation of co-operative societies through formation and enforcement of laws and policies.

From these activities, this directorate has establishment Stimulus Fund (Seed Capital) which covers initial operating expenses that attracts venture capitalists that is going to eradicates capital barriers to entrepreneurs and thus making many people encouraged to venture into business.

Other activities conducted by co-operatives enterprise directorate include promotion of value addition to the products produced by the co-operative societies. It also conducts research activities in order to improve and develop new ways through which the co-operatives can reap maximum profits. It also monitors and inspects the co-operative societies on a regular basis to ensure that they remain within their goals and objectives.

County Enterprise Fund directorate

The County Enterprise Fund directorate whose main aim is to provide an inclusive and sustainable enterprise fund to small/micro enterprises in order to promote growth of entrepreneurship through easy access to affordable financial assistance. The key functions of the fund include -To promote the start-up of small businesses and to grow the already established businesses through easy access to affordable finances.

The fund is also meant to nurture the growth of micro and small enterprises in order to promote self-reliance among the disadvantaged groups which include youth, women and the physically challenged. It also attracts and facilitates investment in cooperative sector especially in institutions that have linkages to micro, small and medium enterprises that benefit the youth, people with low income and women groups.

The directorate developed a uniform/standardized management of the enterprise fund throughout the County. Through this directorate provision of funds for livestock traders who have potential to market or add value to their stock for domestic and international markets is to be provided. It also encourages value addition of livestock products like milk and milk products, hides, skin, meat and meat products.   Another objective of this fund is to boost the Jua kali sector towards achieving the County Government’s industrialization goal. This is important because the Jua Kali sector is a big player in the above process since it encompasses a large population with technical skills whose potential must be tapped.

Biashara Centre

Biashara Centre project is major project established in partnership between the Government of Marsabit and United Nations Development Program (UNDP).the project is to support small and micro enterprise development in order to create more jobs, increase productivity and income security. This Centre is helping the upcoming entrepreneurs on the best ways to conduct business. The Centre is equipped with  training and computers connected with high speed internet that provide easy access to information better service delivery to the users over 120 youths have been trained and are already engaging the center on business development skills.

Tourism Development directorate

Tourism is a key investment component to the County Government of Marsabit.  It’s seen as the gate opener to Marsabit County with visitors from all directions visiting the County to experience a unique ambience through culture, landscape and the three national parks namely Marsabit, Sibiloi and Southern island. Other fascinating sites in the County include Lake Turkana which is the only desert lake in the world, the beautiful sand dunes of North Horr and the Chalbi desert which gives the visitors the view of an endless horizon. These attractions make Marsabit County the next frontier of tourism sector in Kenya. The tourism directorate is mandated with the formation, coordination and implementation of appropriate policies on Tourism Development. The sector has made milestones in offering technical assistance to tourism related enterprises and ventures. The directorate has been forming, coordinating and implementing tourism development policies on ICT platforms to increase its online presence. The sector is focusing on the tourists attraction sites found in the County. The Tourism directorate BRINGS together all stakeholders within the tourism industry in order to increase the tourism potential of the County. This includes mobilization and management of human, finance, assets and other resources for tourism development.

Tourism promotion facilities

Since 2013 the Tourism directorate has been working round the clock to develop and construct tourism promotion facilities to meet the ever growing demand of quality services and set high standards in the tourism industry.Bonqole Tourist Resort and Hotel is set to be completed in Saku, Karare. The construction of this resort was budgeted for in the 2014/2015 financial year and once it has been completed it will serve tourists along the Moyale-Nairobi road. It’s a state of the art resort that is going to boost tourism in the County. Other facilities include the Loiyangalani Museum Bandas located at Loiyangani in Laisamis Sub County. These bandas haves given a new face to the world famous desert museum. Construction of villas at the museum is going to increase bed capacity in order to promote the numbers of both local & international tourist that frequently visit the town. The project is ongoing with the finished villas already attracting visitors. Kalacha Tourist Bandas in North Horr located at the famous spot of Kalacha springs is now refurbished to provide classic accommodation for visitor’s visiting the Chalbi desert and provide a safe haven for family, group parties and holiday lovers. The allocation of funds for the Bandas was factored in the budget of 2014/2015 financial year.

The tourism department in 2014/2015 financial year constructed the Merille Curio Shop at Merrile town. The market is currently operating under the curio owners and it has brought a significant change in their lives.    The shop will also provide market for the hand craft makers across the county whom through handcraft centers they will be able to supply their ware to the