South Korea pumps $94m into Konza technopolis-based science university


Plans to set up Kenya’s Korea funded science and technology center at the Konza Techno City Development Authority (KoTDA) are in advanced stage. The facility’s development is expected to commence in September.

Konza CEO Eng. John Tanui has said, plans are at an advance stage to set up the Kenya Advanced Institute of Science and Technology (KAIST) adding that tenders for construction of KAIST, modeled on South Korea’s Institute of Science and Technology, will be awarded in September and construction will be expected to start immediately. He further said that construction will be completed by 2021, with the first batch of 200 of 600 graduate students starting classes in 2022.

Konza Technopolis is a Vision 2030 project aimed at positioning Kenya, as knowledge-based economy and a preferred Science, Technology and Innovation destination.

The objective of Technopolis is to build a vibrant innovation ecosystem to promote life Science, Engineering and ICT/ITES that will enhance local innovation, Research, and Development, entrepreneurship and Technology enterprise formation culture.

Kenya government and the government of South Korea signed a pre-loan agreement in 2017 for the establishment of KAIST which will culminate to the eventual signing of a loan agreement with Korea Eximbank, amounting to US$94,697,000.

The establishment of KAIST aims to enhance the quality of higher learning while nurturing a technologically advanced population, as well as producing creative young talents and leaders. Phase I of KAIST will be located on 400 acres of land at Konza Technopolis City. It is estimated to generate 17,000 jobs upon completion.