H.E Amb Julius Peter Moto welcomed everybody to the 8th Annual Uganda – United Kingdom Trade and Investment Convention. He stressed that Uganda High Commission and Government of Uganda is happy to associate with Uganda UK Convention for the great works being done to promote trade and investment between the two countries. He was grateful to Mr Willy Mutenza for the unmatched organisational skills that has continued to bring top policy makers from Uganda and UK, administrators, industry experts, the academia, civil society and Ugandans in diaspora in UK annually to this coveted event.
The Convention is priceless! There is non-like it and it is my wish that it continues engaging Governments, the business sector and Ugandans in diaspora towards a common goal of contributing to industrialisation of our mother land, Uganda.
In a special way, he recognised Amb. Zaake Kibedi, Uganda’s Ambassador to the Nordic Countries; Amb. Stephen Mubiru Uganda’s Ambassador to Ankara, Turkey and Amb. James William Kinobe, Uganda’s High Commissioner in Khartoum. Also he recognised the staff at Uganda High Commission London namely Amb. John Mugerwa (Deputy High Commissioner), Mr. Godfrey Kwoba (Minister Counsellor), Ms Juliet Mugerwa (Counsellor), and others for attending this event. Thanked them for coming to support the incredible Uganda Convention in UK.
He also expressed thanks all the members of Parliament of Uganda and all the participants for taking time off their busy schedules to attend this convention.
He further said that the Government of Uganda has not relented in her policies to attract FDIs and encourage Ugandans in diaspora to invest in Uganda. Cognisant of the ever-changing environment for investment, Government has maintained its commitment to fostering an economic and legal regime that is friendly for investment. This commitment has included public investments to lower the input and transactional costs faced by the business sector in Uganda, and implementation of legal and regulatory reforms on an industrial scale.
Because of these efforts, the contribution of investment to Uganda’s economic growth and development has significantly increased over the past three decades. With major works on infrastructures underway (like Karuma Hydro Dam, Isimba Hydro Dam, Kabaale International Airport in Hoima), major oil roads and highways, and planned projects such as the (oil refinery and the associated pipe line and waste treatment plants, standard gauge railway project under the northern corridor project), transportation systems on Lake Victoria, the cost of doing business in Uganda is poised to fall. All these have been made possible as a consequence to total peace and stability country wide, a situation he foresees to continue for a long time hence providing confidence to investors.
The savings and investment rates in the economy have more than doubled over the last two decades. As a result, the annual growth rate of the economy over the last three decades has averaged over 6 percent; poverty levels in the country have more than halved since 1992; our export basket has significantly diversified; (recently in June 2018, Bank of Uganda published a huge trade surplus that Uganda enjoys over members of the EAC – A clear proof that the business climate in Uganda is conducive for business); and the average annual growth rate of employment in the formal sector during the first National Development Plan (2010/11 to 2014/15) exceeded the average annual economic growth rate for the same period. Ladies and gentlemen, we can comfortably conclude that Uganda is not only open for business but she is actually ready for business in all sectors in whatever scale. These plans are feeding into the National Vision 2040 and we shall get there with your participation!
He also revealed that Uganda Waragi is now a recognised brand imported to the UK with a tax number and thanked the importer for making the effort to have a Ugandan brand to the UK market.
Ambassador Moto invited Rose Twine, a Ugandan formerly lived in the Diaspora who moved back and set up a multi-million-dollar manufacturing plant dealing in eco-stove. The Eco Stove is an innovation aimed at drastically reducing indoor air Pollution (IAP), conserve the environment as it saves the end-user cooking fuel cost through the use of Solar and volcanic rocks as primary fuel. The Eco Stoves are manufactured in different sizes; single, Double, oven with cooking hobs (portable) & commercial (inbuilt for institutions: schools, hospitals, prisons and restaurants). The stove package is also customised according to the user cooking needs. Rose added. (www.ecostove.org)
He highlighted efforts of the convention have not been un-noticed. Some tangible outputs on the ground include but not limited to: –
- a multimillion dollar investment in Gulu for grain value chain by the Nagrecha Brothers;
- Over $4million has been invested by Jakana Heights building a modern up-market apartment in Konge Hill;
- An up-market apartment project by Limes Tree Investment in Kololo;
- Over $2m investment in real estate affordable and up-market apartment by a Diaspora under Eric and Winston’s project
- 3475 delegates had so far attended the Convention
- More than 90 Ugandans relocated to Uganda and are contributing to transfer of technology and know-how,
- 31 companies from Uganda had showcased their services and 67 UK companies including SME by Diaspora had also exhibited at the Conventions.
- Donations to the social sector such as schools and the health sector.
- Over 100 business delegations to Uganda and numerous enquiries in the tourism and mining sectors of Uganda.
He urged that as UK proposes to exit the European Union in March 2019 in what is termed BREXIT, Uganda should ready itself to partake in international trade with UK and the rest of the world, in a rules-based system as enshrined in the various agreements of the World Trade Organisation. Ugandans in diaspora are particularly encouraged to provide leadership in transfer of knowhow and capital to Uganda to create new jobs and opportunities for the younger and future generations. A good number of Ugandans in diaspora are commended for partaking in FDIs to Uganda. All countries do it and Ugandans in diaspora should copy what other nations do. Get involved and be a participant in the business sector in Uganda to create wealth and expand the tax base.
The Ambassador requested them to take the advantage of Uganda being a member to the East African Community and COMESA, powerful building blocks for the ultimate integration of markets in Africa too.
He said that the UK Mission would focus mainly in attracting investors, but not limited, in the following fields:-Industrial grade sugar for the pharmaceutical industries; Starch and textiles sector; Iron and steel to support manufacturing industries; lithium mineral in Uganda; copper mines and; Tailor made (group) tourism to Uganda.
He urged them to visit the Uganda Investment Authority website: https://www.ugandainvest.go.ug, for investment guides and opportunities in Uganda.
He assured them that The Uganda High Commission, London will be open to them on all matters regarding their investments and tourism needs in Uganda.
He wished them a fruit deliberation during the convention.
See you next year on the 14th Sept at Troxy https://ukconvention2019.eventbrite.co.uk