Document Type

Conference Paper


East African Institute


Results of cleaner production initiatives taken so far in Africa amply justify the benefits of cleaner production (CP). The joint UNIDO-UNEP initiative of establishing National Cleaner Production Centres (NCPCs) in developing countries have been successful in establishing such centres in Kenya, Tanzania, Zimbabwe, Tunisia and Morocco. In most of these countries, initial activities have involved demonstration projects such as those funded by DANIDA and NORAD in Zimbabwe and Tanzania. However, experiences in Asian countries such as Thailand and Malaysia have shown that such demonstration projects may not necessarily rise to the original expectation of the multiplication effects of the CP concept in SME sub-sectors, despite clear demonstration of the technical and financial viability of these projects . This has been attributed to the distinct characteristics of SMEs in Asian countries, most of which reflect the situation in Africa. These include lack of resources and skilled manpower, and the fear of taking high risks. In this document, we argue that the initial step to the successful introduction and diffusion of CP technologies in developing countries such as Kenya should be the formulation of relevant policies and legislation, and institutions to oversee their implementation. The paper also recognises the need for a different approach to the introduction of CP concepts in SMEs as compared to larger industries, owing to the typical characteristics of Kenyan SMEs. Building upon the major focal areas specific to Asian SMEs identified by , this paper analyses the overall pre-requisites for successful CP adoption in Kenya and proposes an iterative mechanism for their implementation. These consider the current growth and proliferation of small industries in Kenya that make the adoption of CP techniques in SMEs become highly relevant and timely for combating pollution and reducing energy use.


This work was published before the author joined Aga Khan University.


EXPO 2000 Conference