The rising prices of steel in the international market have induced a significant hike in construction cost in Kenya during the past few months.
This has seen most players in the steel industry raising the prices of their commodities to protect their margins.
Major players in the industry including Devki Steel Mills, Insteel and Kalu Works have, since the beginning of this year, raised the prices of steel rods by at least 25 per cent.
A kilogramme of steel rod in Nairobi is selling for as high as Sh125. In January its average cost was Sh78.
The increase in the price of steel bars has seen the cost of reinforcement steel, door panels and window frames going up significantly resulting in higher construction costs and higher house prices.
Analysts say that due to the impact of high prices of coking coal and iron ore (the main raw materials required in steel manufacturing), producers are expected to pass on the high cost to protect their margins.
Steel is a major component of the building and construction sector as it guarantees the strength of a structure.