Africa-China

The Chinese embassy in Kenya on Friday held an interactive session with local employees of the Standard Gauge Railway (SGR) commuter train as part of a series of activities to mark the 55th anniversary since the establishment of diplomatic ties between China and Kenya.

Li Xuhang, charge d’affaires at the Chinese Embassy in Kenya and senior executives from the Africa Star Railway Operation Company that operates the SGR passenger service, joined dozens of local employees for a bonding session to strengthen friendship and cross-cultural understanding.

“You are not only the witness of the development of China-Kenya relations and cooperation but also the builders of our shared future,” Li told local SGR workers, adding that Kenyan staff accounts for 72.7 percent of all the SGR commuter service workforce.

Li said the modern commuter train dubbed Madaraka Express that operates along the 480 km Mombasa-Nairobi Standard Gauge Railway has been at the forefront of cementing China-Kenya fruitful cooperation.

“In the new era, the SGR will set an example for building a China-Africa community of shared future,” said Li.

“I believe that with the joint efforts of Chinese and Kenyan staff, the SGR will continue to be a shining landmark for China-Kenya friendship and cooperation,” he added.

The SGR commuter train has ferried 2.12 million passengers since its launch and is credited for revolutionizing transport and commerce in Kenya.

Li Qiang, Chairman of Africa Star Railway Operation Company Limited said its localization program has focused on skills upgrade of Kenyan employees to enhance their competence.

“By professional training and skills competition, we have steadily promoted localization and rapidly nurtured groups of Kenyan SGR operation professionals,” he said.

“These initiatives are only the first steps in the company’s efforts to integrate employees, promote localization, strengthen corporate culture and enhance company development,” he added.

Eric Macharia, a team leader at the SGR passenger management division, said the modern train service has provided a platform for local youth to realize their career aspirations. Enditem

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