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Seeking Indian Partners in Industrialization

Tuesday, 19th October 2021
The Executive Director UTB hands a bag of Uganda tourism promotional material to Grace Akello

Preparations have been kick-started in Uganda for the upcoming visit of a 54-member Indian business delegation to the country. The preparations were flagged off by a briefing on the visit which the High Commissioner gave today, 19th October, to the Permanent Secretary of the Ministry of Foreign Affairs. At an early morning briefing, Akello informed the principal host of the visit, of the confirmation by the Indian Industries Association, a powerful industrial body in the economic growth of that country, of its members visit to Uganda from 3rd to 10th December, 2021. The High Commission has a long list of government and non-government bodies to be consulted as important partners in this visit. Members of the Indian Industries Association are keen to explore investment opportunities in Ugandan economic sectors, which will be viable and profitable enough to justify their investment. Uganda High Commission in New Delhi, for its part, is hopeful that various firms of the IIA visiting Uganda, will decide to locate their operations in Uganda and thus promote job-creation and technology transfer while contributing to the industrialization aspirations of Vision 2040.

The next government agency to be briefed on the forthcoming visit was Uganda Investment Authority (UIA). Akello held a two-hour meeting with officials in this one-stop investment centre including the Director General, who welcomed the visit and pledged to work closely with all the authorities to ensure that it yielded investment in the key areas of industrialization as directed by the Third National Development Plan. The UIA team closely involved with the visit include the Deputy Director General, Dr Kyalimpa; Ms Winnie Lawoko who is Director of Small and Medium Enterprises and of Science, Technology and Innovation;  Mr Martin Muhangi who is Director of Investment Pomotion;  Mr Eriya Kaweirehu; and Ms Rita Mugalu.

At the last meeting of the day with Uganda Tourism Board which also warmly welcomed the visit, it was agreed that all agencies would work under the over-all guidance of the principal host namely, the Ministry of Foreign Affairs. For its part UTB looked forward to the visit as it would have two advantages: first as an opportunity to promote the tourism attractions of the country and secondly as a chance to interest the business delegates to consider investing directly in strategic tourism areas including infrastructure, hotels and accommodation facilities, etc. The agency undertook to supply a list of hotels which would accommodate the guests in all the regions of the visit. The organization particularly welcomed the Indian visit because it would be a precursor to the in-house plans and arrangements of the organization to pursue India as a source of tourists.

Ina visit that will draw together the ministries of Foreign Affairs, Tourism, Industry, Internal affairs, Mineral and Energy Development as well as Finance and Local governments; it is clear that a national organizing committee will have to be instituted to ensure smooth operations during the visit. Equally critical to the success of the visit and investment attraction will be the private sector of the country which is on the High Commission list of agencies to be consulted and incorporated into all aspects of the visit.