Photo: REUTERS/Philimon Bulawayo.

NAIROBI - A three-day international conference and exhibition showcasing cutting-edge technologies in the construction sector whose growth has accelerated amid conducive policies and rising incomes kicked off in Nairobi on Tuesday.

The event, dubbed the Big 5 Construct Kenya 2019, attracted more than 200 exhibitors, including senior government and business executives  from 30 countries.

"This exhibition presents an opportunity for policymakers and industry executives to learn about latest technologies that can be harnessed to achieve the affordable housing agenda for the country," said Gordon Kihalangwa, principal secretary in the State Department of Public Works.

The government is keen to leverage on private capital to develop new housing projects in the rapidly growing urban centers, Kihalangwa said.

"The government has embarked on construction of new housing units to meet a rapidly growing demand and we are ready to collaborate with the private sector to achieve that goal," he said.

Kenya's National Construction Authority (NCA) partnered with international events company DMG Events to host the exhibition that will run concurrently with seminars covering themes like project management, architecture and design, disruptive technologies and women in construction.

Ben Greenish, senior vice president at DMG Events, said that the premier exhibition for players in the construction sector is expected to attract new investments to hasten realization of affordable shelter goal in Kenya.

"We are keen to provide a platform for international companies to introduce latest building technologies and solutions in Kenya and the eastern African region," said Greenish.

He said international exhibitors have already reached out to state agencies to facilitate deployment of technologies that can help bridge the housing deficit in Kenya.

Maurice Akech, executive director of NCA, said the three-day international construction expo will elevate Kenya's status as an investment hub for building technologies.

"The exhibition will help us learn about the latest trends in the construction sector and how we can harness innovations and international best practices to achieve the universal housing agenda," said Akech.

XINHUA