On 6th April, the United Nations Industrial Development Organization (UNIDO) held a handover ceremony to introduce Japanese Technologies at three hospitals in Kenya, where UNIDO partnered with three Japanese companies to supply the products and to provide technical training to medical staff with funding from Japan to mitigate the impacts of COVID-19.
Kinsei Sangyo Co., Ltd. has supplied a smoke-free gasification incinerator for medical waste to Mutuini Sub-District Hospital. The incinerator protects medical workers from secondary infections and improves medical waste management by minimizing exposure to health risk factors.
TSP Taiyo Inc. has supplied a PCR testing mobile lab for use in Machakos County Referral Hospital to improve accessibility for PCR testing in remote areas. The mobile trailer, equipped with solar panels and with bio-safety cabinets to protect medical workers, enables PCR testing to be administered in hard-to-reach areas.
Marusyo Sangyo Co., Ltd. has supplied photocatalytic coating for use in Jumuia Hospital in Nairobi and Nyathuna Sub-District Hospital in Kambu. The anti-bacterial coating responds to room light and eliminates pathogenic microorganisms, reducing infections among health workers and patients in hospitals. It provides a cost-effective and convenient way to improve sanitation in hospitals and other medical facilities.
During the handover ceremony, Hon. David Osiany the Chief Administrative Secretary for Ministry of Industrialization, Trade, and Enterprise Development, said that the project was dedicated not only to assist the country to fight against COVID-19 and other infectious diseases but also allowed the medical industry in Kenya to learn about different technologies that are available in Japan.
The project facilitated the introduction of new applications in Kenya, through the implementation of the three technologies, and fostered close cooperation with Kenyan partners to provide training to medical staff and technical staff. It is expected that these technologies will be further introduced to broader areas in the country in the future.
H.E. Mr. OKANIWA Ken, Ambassador of Japan to Kenya and Hon said “Japan has supported universal health coverage and the health sector in Kenya for many years. Our cooperation enabled Kenya to better deal with COVID-19 and also to support other countries in Africa. Application of the three Japanese technologies will greatly improve the functions of hospitals and access to healthcare. As H.E. President Kenyatta mentioned last September, the private sector has a crucial role to play in fighting COVID-19 and catalyzing strong and resilient recovery. Japan will continue working to enhance public-private partnerships in the health sector as well as other sectors in Kenya”.
Ms. Kawira Bucyana, UNIDO Representative ad interim to Kenya, showed appreciation to all stakeholders in Kenya. She said that the project implementation was not easy due to the impacts of the COVID-19 pandemic, mainly because the equipment and technical training needed to be done online due to travel restrictions. With the help of various online tools, the project overcame challenges, and the equipment is now fully operational in Kenya.
The three Japanese companies are registered on Sustainable Technology Promotion Platform (STePP), an information-sharing platform managed by the UNIDO Investment and Technology Promotion Office (ITPO) in Tokyo. Currently, 112 Japanese companies are registered under STePP, and 130 technologies are being promoted through the platform. UNIDO launched STePP Demonstration project in 2020 with USD 4 million funding from the Government of Japan to improve health, sanitary and hygiene conditions and contribute to inclusive and sustainable industrialization in 10 developing and emerging countries, five of them in Africa.