Posts tagged as: eac

Catholic Bishops Call for Inclusive Dialogue

By Lorraine Josiane Manishatse

In a communiqué released on 10 September, Burundian catholic bishops call on Burundians to engage in an inclusive dialogue for the great interests of the nation to prevent war.

“We would once again insist on the inclusive dialogue that must be prioritized for the great interest of the nation for blocking the way to all those who opt for the path of war,” Burundi catholic bishops said.

They said Burundians have suffered so much from war casualties and no responsible citizen can accept that the country plunges once again into war. “Everyone knows that disagreements between politicians have resulted in mutual exclusion, killings and assassinations,” they said.

They also said this situation has forced many Burundians to flee the country to neighboring countries where they live in terrible conditions. “Among them there are politicians, law enforcement and security officials, economic operators and leaders of various civil society organizations,” they said.

Bishops said that Burundians cannot work together to build their homeland together since some are forced to stay abroad. They called on all Burundians to join their forces to build a better country. “Those who are in power or those who seek to conquer it and ever all Burundians are like travelers who share the same road.

Everyone needs the contribution of the other, “according to the bishops of the catholic church in Burundi.

They said they fear if the inter-Burundian- dialogue is delayed, the problems the country is facing will become more complicated.

On 6 September , Burundian Ombudsman, Edouard Nduwimana announced that the last round of the inter-Burundian dialogue of Arusha, led by former Tanzanian President, William Benjamin Mkapa will be held by October. He said the people prosecuted in Burundi will not be invited to this peace talks.

Burundi has plunged into a violent political crisis since President Pierre Nkurunziza announced a controversial run for a third term, which he won in contested elections in July 2015. Since then, a dialogue between the Burundi Government and the opposition has been demanded by the UN, AU, EU, EAC and other partners to restore peace. A proper dialogue never took off. A series of meetings organized by the EAC that Burundi’s leaders committed to -but failed to attend- initially.

Burundi

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Uganda Now Woos Kenya Plastic Bags Firms

Photo: Benson Momanyi/Daily Nation

Plastic bags vendors in Kisii market.

By James Kariuki

Uganda is secretly wooing disgruntled Kenyan plastic bags manufacturers to relocate to the capital Kampala following a total ban in the country.

In a letter sent to Kenyan plastic bags manufacturers entitled “Investment Opportunity in Plastic Sector”, Uganda says there is big growth opportunity in the country for manufacturers of quality packaging material.

“We have laws to protect and allow investors to repatriate their profits as they deem fit. Likewise, their expatriate staff can come in easily,” says the letter authored by the Uganda Investment Authority (UIA).

A Kenya Gazette notice signed by Environment secretary Judi Wakhungu outlawed the manufacture, import, sale or use of plastic carrier bags in Kenya.

The ban has caused loss of thousands of jobs as manufacturers suspended operations to avoid steep fines stipulated under the law.

Makers of alternative carrier bags are, however, doing booming business, while supporters of the new law cite its potential to check environmental pollution by the non-biodegradable plastic bags.

Usage of the bags now attracts a fine of up to Ksh4 million (about $40,000) or a two-year jail term.

All East Africa Community (EAC) member countries were supposed to ban usage of plastic bags, but so far only Kenya and Rwanda have effected the bans.

High quality packaging

Uganda is flaunting its economic growth rate of between five and seven per cent to entice Kenyan manufacturers.

“Many Ugandan enterprises are missing out on opportunities in larger markets because their packaging does not meet international standards. In order for Ugandan processed honey, fruit juices, mineral water, herbal medicines and chemicals, among other products to be competitive nationally, regionally and globally, the packaging has got to be of high quality,” says the letter.

The invite signed by UIA investment executive Robinah Magoba says most Ugandan companies import plastic packaging material from Kenya where the PVoC (Pre-Export Verification of Conformity to Standards Programme) packaging technology was in use.

“PVoC technology is more acceptable worldwide and most of the companies that need good quality packaging, import their customised packaging material from Kenya, South Africa and China,” says the letter.

Relocation

Some Kenyan firms are said to have since established subsidiaries in Uganda and the invitation is intended to convince them to relocate their machinery.

UIA says it has a One Stop Centre (OSC) where investors will be assisted to register their businesses, acquire work permits for foreign workers and acquire land as well as get the necessary regulatory approvals.

As part of the East African Community (EAC), Uganda supported calls to curb proliferation of plastic wastes but adopted the waste management proposal where it plans to establish recycling facilities to handle waste plastics while promoting use of plastic packaging for its industries.

Kenya Launches e-Passport Ahead of December 2018 EAC Target

By Jeremiah Wakaya

Nairobi — The government has launched the Kenyan East African electronic passport ahead of the December 31, 2018 target concurred by East African Community (EAC) members States.

Interior Cabinet Secretary Fred Matiangi while presiding over the launch of the new passports on Thursday described the rollout as a milestone in efforts to ensure the digitisation of identification information for all citizens.

“Our departments are coming together and you can see that we are stepping on to a modern digital platform of managing identification and information of our citizens,” Matiangi said during the function also graced by Pakistan High Commissioner to the country Raza Bashir Tarar, his cabinet colleagues Charles Keter (Energy and Petroleum), Joe Mucheru (ICT), Phyllis Kandie (EAC, Labour and Social Protection), Interior Principal Secretary Karanja Kibicho and Gordon Kihalangwa, the Director General at the Directorate of Immigration and Registration of Persons.

Matiangi lauded the staff at the directorate of immigration for ensuring the timely adoption of the new electronic passports, something he said the government had taken with seriousness since EAC Heads of States agreed on the rollout at the 17th Ordinary Summit held on March 2, 2016 in Arusha.

The new travel documents according to Matiangi comply with guidelines set by the International Civil Aviation Organisation (ICAO), making them admissible globally.

Matiangi however warned immigration staff against irregular issuance of the passports saying the integrity of the new passport will be protected at all cost.

“We want to be even much more serious than we’ve been in handling our identification passports. Our passports must not be in the hands of the people who ought not to have them. The integrity of these documents must be protected,” he said pointing out that already twelve immigration officials had been dismissed on integrity grounds.

So far 1,800 applications for the electronic passports have been received with the production capacity set at 2,000 per day.

Speaking to Capital FM News, Immigration DG Kihalangwa said all measures have been put in place to ensure the printer is able to process all the requests in a timely manner.

“Right now in the system, I have 1,800 applications ready for printing. The notice we’ve sent to ICAO and embassies is that we are beginning issuance of the documents from Friday.”

He however said all requirements for application and renewal of passports will remain unchanged as well as the number of folios which range from 32 pages for Series A, 48 pages for Series B and 64 pages for Series C passports.

“The duration is the same. You will get the booklet that suits based on your needs. The government is trying to subsidize this process because it’s the right of every citizen to have a passport,” Kihalangwa said adding that the current passport will be phased out by September 1, 2019.

Contrary to perceptions that the passports will reduce the time spent in airports, Kihalangwa said there may not be significant changes say for the fact that document will gag against impersonation and forgery.

“Your details will not be doubted because what is going to be in the chip and the bio data page of the passport will match,” he said.

The Pakistan envoy to Kenya lauded the government for taking the move saying he admired the progress with which the country was developing its national database.

“Basically this is a testimonial to the visionary leadership of this republic and their seriousness in dealing with immigration matters in a manner that is at par or even exceeds international standards. This is extremely impressive.”

“Kenya has led the way in the use of ICT and I am sure there are better things to come,” he added.

CSs Keter, Mucheru, and Kandie also lauded the Immigration Department for the achievement observing that the electronic passports will enhance trade with other nations while at the same time boosting the credibility of the Kenyan passport globally.

During the launch, two inaugural passports were issued by CS Matiangi, one to James Awino, the other to an undisclosed diplomatic passport holder.

The passports are being printed locally in collaboration with Kenya’s subsidiary of De La Rue.

Kenya: Kenya Launches e-Passport Ahead of December 2018 EAC Target

By Jeremiah Wakaya

Nairobi — The government has launched the Kenyan East African electronic passport ahead of the December 31, 2018 target concurred by East African Community (EAC) members States.

Interior Cabinet Secretary Fred Matiangi while presiding over the launch of the new passports on Thursday described the rollout as a milestone in efforts to ensure the digitisation of identification information for all citizens.

“Our departments are coming together and you can see that we are stepping on to a modern digital platform of managing identification and information of our citizens,” Matiangi said during the function also graced by Pakistan High Commissioner to the country Raza Bashir Tarar, his cabinet colleagues Charles Keter (Energy and Petroleum), Joe Mucheru (ICT), Phyllis Kandie (EAC, Labour and Social Protection), Interior Principal Secretary Karanja Kibicho and Gordon Kihalangwa, the Director General at the Directorate of Immigration and Registration of Persons.

Matiangi lauded the staff at the directorate of immigration for ensuring the timely adoption of the new electronic passports, something he said the government had taken with seriousness since EAC Heads of States agreed on the rollout at the 17th Ordinary Summit held on March 2, 2016 in Arusha.

The new travel documents according to Matiangi comply with guidelines set by the International Civil Aviation Organisation (ICAO), making them admissible globally.

Matiangi however warned immigration staff against irregular issuance of the passports saying the integrity of the new passport will be protected at all cost.

“We want to be even much more serious than we’ve been in handling our identification passports. Our passports must not be in the hands of the people who ought not to have them. The integrity of these documents must be protected,” he said pointing out that already twelve immigration officials had been dismissed on integrity grounds.

So far 1,800 applications for the electronic passports have been received with the production capacity set at 2,000 per day.

Speaking to Capital FM News, Immigration DG Kihalangwa said all measures have been put in place to ensure the printer is able to process all the requests in a timely manner.

“Right now in the system, I have 1,800 applications ready for printing. The notice we’ve sent to ICAO and embassies is that we are beginning issuance of the documents from Friday.”

He however said all requirements for application and renewal of passports will remain unchanged as well as the number of folios which range from 32 pages for Series A, 48 pages for Series B and 64 pages for Series C passports.

“The duration is the same. You will get the booklet that suits based on your needs. The government is trying to subsidize this process because it’s the right of every citizen to have a passport,” Kihalangwa said adding that the current passport will be phased out by September 1, 2019.

Contrary to perceptions that the passports will reduce the time spent in airports, Kihalangwa said there may not be significant changes say for the fact that document will gag against impersonation and forgery.

“Your details will not be doubted because what is going to be in the chip and the bio data page of the passport will match,” he said.

The Pakistan envoy to Kenya lauded the government for taking the move saying he admired the progress with which the country was developing its national database.

“Basically this is a testimonial to the visionary leadership of this republic and their seriousness in dealing with immigration matters in a manner that is at par or even exceeds international standards. This is extremely impressive.”

“Kenya has led the way in the use of ICT and I am sure there are better things to come,” he added.

CSs Keter, Mucheru, and Kandie also lauded the Immigration Department for the achievement observing that the electronic passports will enhance trade with other nations while at the same time boosting the credibility of the Kenyan passport globally.

During the launch, two inaugural passports were issued by CS Matiangi, one to James Awino, the other to an undisclosed diplomatic passport holder.

The passports are being printed locally in collaboration with Kenya’s subsidiary of De La Rue.

e-Passport to Replace Current Ones By 2019

By Stella Cherono

The current Kenyan passports will be rendered obsolete in two years.

Kenyans have therefore been asked to apply for an e-passport that was launched by the immigration department on Thursday.

The immigration department will start processing and issuing the new passport, which also serves as the East African Community passport, starting September 1.

“The Immigration Department will no longer process and issue the current ordinary, diplomatic and East African passports,” Director of Immigration Gordon Kihalangwa said during the launch.

The passport will have electronic chip with the owner’s details.

SIGNATURES

Mr Kihalangwa said the department had received 1,800 application for the new e-passport.

“We have a backlog of another 16,000 applications for the current passport which will obviously be processed as the e-passports. We are asking those who made the applications to come and give their signatures and other details for us to continue with the processing,” he said.

He said the new modernised system will make it faster for the department to process new passports and make renewals.

“With the kind of equipment we have now, we will be able to process up to 2,000 passports a day, an improvement from the 800 we have been doing,” Mr Kihalangwa said.

DUPLICATES

He however said 3,000 processed and printed passports will be issued to the owners but they will be encouraged to apply for the new passport during collection.

Acting Interior Cabinet Secretary Fred Matiang’i said the e-passport is highly secure and that it is difficult to produce duplicates.

“The data base is enhanced with Automated Fingerprint Verification System (AFIS) that guards against multiple passport issuance to the same person.

“This minimises theft of data and passport forgery. The electronic chip embedded in the e-passport booklet stores holders’ bio data and biometric information safely,” Dr Matiang’i said.

He said the passport comes in handy in addressing the threats of terrorism, human trafficking and other transnational crimes while curbing cases of identity fraud.

EAC

The function was also attended by Cabinet secretaries Phyllis Kandie (East Africa Community), Joe Mucheru (ICT) and Charles Keter (Energy) and several principal secretaries.

The directive to rollout the issuance of the EAC e-passport was launched during the 17th EAC Ordinary Summit of the EAC Heads of State held in Arusha Tanzania on March 2 last year.

Kenya becomes the second EAC community state to launch the EAC e-passport after Burundi. All member states are required to do so by December 31 next year.

The charges for the new passport remain Sh7,000.

Application can be done online through the e-citizen platform but applicants will be required to present themselves in person for biometric capture at the passport issuing offices in Kisumu, Mombasa and Nairobi.

Kenyans to Start Receiving e-Passports From Friday

By Simon Ndonga

Nairobi — The Immigrations Department will start issuing the new Kenyan East African electronic passports from Friday even as applications for the document hit 1,800, at the time of its launch.

The directive to rollout the issuance of the EAC e-passport was launched during the 17th EAC Ordinary Summit of the EAC Heads of State held in Arusha Tanzania on March 2 last year.

Kenya becomes the second EAC State to launch the e-passport after Burundi with all member states are required to do so by December 31 next year.

Immigrations Director General Godon Kihalangwa had stated that the rollout of the passports was to commence by midnight, with those who will have acquired the new travel documents expected to start using them from Friday.

The electronic passport will guard against impersonation with the introduction of a unique chip through which the holders will be identified.

The digital passports are expected to provide travellers with benefits such as use of automated border clearance, automated issuance of boarding passes, and faster travel arrangements with all airports across the world where e-passport reader equipment is in use.

The e-passports conform to international security standards that require all of them to contain a tamper-proof electronic chip that carries a holder’s information and travel history.

The smart passport will phase out the East African passport as well as individual passports issued to EAC bloc member states of Kenya, Tanzania, Uganda and Rwanda to their citizens.

Kenya

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East Africa: There Is Big Progress in Monetary Union – Regional Governors

By Martin Luther Oketch

Kampala — East African Community (EAC) central bank governors have assured the region that big progress towards the establishment of a Monetary Union is visible.

In late 2013, EAC countries (Uganda, Kenya, Tanzania, Rwanda and Burundi) signed a joint protocol setting out the process and convergence criteria for an EAC Monetary Union.

The signing of the protocol represents a step towards regional economic integration.

The signing follows ratification of the protocols for a Customs Union (2005) and the Common Market (2010). The EAC Monetary Union forecasts that a common currency, to replace the national currencies of member countries, will be introduced by 2024.

During their 21st Ordinary Meeting of the regional Monetary Affairs Committee (MAC) that was recently convened at Kampala Serena Hotel, the governors said there is progress towards establishing the East African Monetary Union.

“The legislative bills that will establish the East African Monetary Institute and East Africa Bureau of Statistics were before the East African Legislative Assembly for enactment,” they stated in their joint communiqué after the meeting.

They added that a draft bill for establishing the East African Surveillance, Compliance and Enforcement Commission was before the Sectoral Council on Legal and Judicial Affairs for consideration.

“Furthermore, drafting of the bill establishing the Financial Services Commission had commenced,” they added.

Based on the 20th ordinary MAC meeting held in Kampala on July14 last year, the governors said progress had been made in key areas.

These include; harmonising the monetary policy frameworks and exchange rate operations, rules and practices governing bank supervision and financial reporting in preparation to the East African Monetary Union.

The meeting was chaired by Bank of Uganda governor Emmanuel Tumusiime Mutebile and attended by Prof Benno Ndulu, Governor of the Bank of Tanzania, Dr Patrick Njoroge, Governor of the Central Bank of Kenya and John Rwangombwa, Governor of the National Bank of Rwanda.

Also part of the meeting was Othom Rago Ajak, Governor of the Bank of South Sudan who attended for the first time since the accession of the Republic of South Sudan to the EAC.

Mr Melchior Wagara, the first Deputy Governor of Bank of the Republic of Burundi and Dr Louis Kasekende, the deputy Governor Bank of Uganda also attended.

There were also representatives from the EAC secretariat, International Monetary Fund and German Society for International Cooperation.

Harmonise Processes to Boost Trade – Kenya

By Allan Olingo

Kenyan business people have cited restrictions, costly regulations, non-harmonisation of standards, harassment and multiple verifications of goods by Tanzanian authorities, as some of the factors feeding the trade wars between the two countries.

The Kenyan delegation at the recent traders’ forum in Dar es Salaam to deliberate on trade relations between the Tanzania Private Sector Federation (TPSF) and the Kenya Private Sector Alliance (KEPSA), noted that Kenyan exporters have encountered restrictions while seeking to enter especially the Tanzania cement, edible oils and cigarettes market.

“There is a need to facilitate administrative processes on the movement of goods including clearance at border points. We also need a rethink of the policies regarding preferential treatment in respect of cement and edible oils.

“It is time to engage the private sector firms that initially lobbied for these restrictions on the need to review and change their positions,” said George Owuor, KEPSA governor and EAC sector board chair.

Kenyan vehicle parts manufacturers, for example, complained of being denied preferential treatment for their automotive products.

The Kenyan delegation also raised issue with the harmonisation of standards, noting that Tanzanian officials seemed to be reading from a different set of rules, which basically puts a new layer of trade restrictions between the two countries.

They cited the existence of two certification agencies; the Tanzania Bureau of Standards and the Tanzania Food and Drug Authority, (TFDA) yet in other EAC countries, only an equivalent of the former exist. Their overlapping roles cause delays as one has to get cleared by both. This happens at the Namanga, Sirare, Isebania and Holili border posts.

“We recommend that the East African Community Secretariat promotes the harmonisation of standards and co-operation between various agencies. The adoption of equivalence and recognition on mutual standards could help address harmonisation between the different bodies and agencies taking into consideration that there are already bodies in the region that have the relevant certification at both regional and international levels. Harmonisation should be broad and address both goods and services,” Mr Owuor said.

“Our trucks that undergo verification at the manufacturers’ premises still have to be verified at the border which is burdensome. Tanzania also requires mandatory refumigation of wooden pallets even when these have been treated in Kenya.

“It is important that the two countries recognise international standards in respect of treatment of wooden pallets. It time that both the Dar es Salaam and Nairobi administrations enhance information sharing and co-operation on standards and verification through the single window system, already in place in Kenya,” the businessmen said.

The TFDA was also accused of requiring importers to register, re-label and retest already certified goods, which makes it difficult to sell perishable products in Tanzania.

Kenya

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Price of Technical Inspection of Vehicles to Be Increased

By Diane Uwimana

Public Transport Office [OTRACO] has announced that the price of the technical inspection of vehicles will increase from September 1st. Vehicles owners and drivers speak of an unjust measure.

Following the recent measure taken by OTRACO, the price for the technical control of public transport vehicles will go from BIF 11, 500 to BIF 35, 000. For private cars, the price will move from BIF 8,100 to 50,000 while the control will cost BIF 10,000 against BIF2,000 for motorbikes. The measure will come into force from September 1st this year.

Vehicle users say the measure is unjust. “This measure imposed by OTRACO didn’t go down well with us given that we had paid other taxes before”, says a driver met in Bujumbura city center. He was referring to the recent measure by Bujumbura Mayor that compels public parking users to pay taxes. He says they pay BIF 21,000 per month.

Another driver says the measure is unfair given that that transportation costs remain unchanged. “This measure comes to worsen the situation as we live in dire straits. We will operate at a loss”, he says.

In a note issued by OTRACO, the measure comes as a harmonization with the EAC partner states. Vehicle users say, however, that Burundi still lags behind other countries in terms of development. “It is not a good thing to compare Burundi with other EAC partner states given that the purchasing power and the cost of living are not the same”, says N.N ,a private car owner.

“We conform to the government project”

Albert Maniratunga, Director General of Public Transport Office (OTRACO) says the measure to increase the price of the technical inspection of vehicles results from the determination of the Head of State who encourages semi-public companies to avoid operating at loss. “Vehicle users will have to pay the inspection cost”.

He also says the measure has been approved by the board of the directors of the office and the Minister of Public Transportation as well. “We must increase our income given that we lost BIF 4,800 for each card delivered at BIF 8,100. It is a net loss in comparison with other EAC member states”, he says.

For the Director General, OTRACO must adapt to the EAC protocol. “We must do whatever it takes to avoid always lagging behind others”, he says.

Albert Maniratunga believes the rise in price has nothing to do with the purchasing power within the EAC partner states. “Those who think like that want to plunge the country into the abyss”, he says.

Gabriel Rufyiri, Chairman of OLUCOME, a local NGO involved in the fight against embezzlement and corruption, says the technical control for private cars, vans and others was increased three years ago. It cost at around BIF 5,000. Then, the same public institution increases it at an average of 150% for all vehicles”, he says.

For the NGO, it is an unjust measure if one refers to the cost of living of Burundians. “, Burundi cannot be compared with other EAC member states. The cost of living and the purchasing power are not the same. In Rwanda, the GDP is at 700$ per year and per inhabitant; in Uganda, it is around 600$ per year like in Tanzania and Kenya. But in Burundi, the DGP is under 300$ per year and per inhabitant”, he says.

Gabriel Rufyiri urges the government to increase the GDP and development projects instead of increasing taxes and prices that come to worsen the Burundians’ living conditions.

Support BUBU Policy, Trade Minister Tells Central Bank

By Dorothy Nakaweesi

Kampala — Trade Minister Amelia Kyambadde has asked Bank of Uganda Governor Emmanuel Mutebile to support some government policies such as ‘Buy Uganda Build Uganda’ (BUBU).

BUBU is a policy geared towards promoting use of locally manufactured goods and use of local skills/personnel.

While speaking at the 12th International Private Sector Uganda Trade Expo at Lugogo on Tuesday, Ms Kyambadde said: “I am a bit disappointed – I think you need to interest yourselves (BoU) with some of the policies by government. I would like the Governor to revise this issue. BoU is supposed to be the champion of the economy and support us.”

Ms Kyambadde was responding to the Governor’s speech read for him by deputy director research David Sajjabi, in which he, for the second time, criticised the BUBU policy saying it will jeopardise Uganda’s export trade with her neighbouring states in the East African community (EAC).

Mr Sajjabi said: “The proposal for BUBU legislation would, if implemented, offer domestic producers preferential treatment on the domestic market over our EAC partners, for example, through preferential public procurements policies.”

Protectionism

According to Mr Mutebile, BUBU offers trade protection through administrative measures rather than tariffs.

“It is therefore inconsistent with the EAC customs protocol which bids any EAC partner state from undertaking any administration measures which discriminates in favour of its own producers at the expense of those of its partner states,” he added.

He said a level playing field for producers in all partner states is a fundamental principle of the Customs Union and the common market. BUBU is not consistent with this proposal.

“We therefore need to reflect on the potential and adverse repercussion of the BUBU proposal. If it is implemented BUBU will invite retaliation from other partner states why should they offer a level playing field yet Uganda is not doing the same,” he added.

The EAC market has become indispensable for Uganda’s products we can choose one but not both.

Ms Kyambadde said BUBU is not conflicting with regional exports but supports through the competition generated locally.

“What you should know is that all other partner states have restrictive public procurement policies that restrict local content globally. Even if you’re the best you will not wake up and compete,” she explained.

She added that BUBU will not retaliate because there is already an agenda to promote government procurement locally.

“BUBU is premised on the PPDA clause which -it came from a PPDA Act which talks about preference of 23 per cent which is built into a policy and then into a local content bill. Please support us,” Ms Kyambadde said.

Exports to EAC

Over the last 10 years, Uganda’s exports to other EAC member countries have risen rapidly at an average of 20 percent.

In 2016/17 fiscal year Uganda exported $1.3 billion (Shs4.6 trillion) of goods to the EAC which amounted to 41 percent of all Uganda’s total merchandise exports.

“The EAC is also our fastest exports growing market, ten years ago, it accounted for only 25 per cent of Uganda’s exports. For Uganda’s manufacture exports, the EAC is even more important accounting for 54 per cent of all Uganda’s manufactured exports in 2016,” Mr Sajjabi said.

He added that if Uganda is to develop a vibrant manufacturing export base, create employment and export earnings-exporting to the regional market is an essential first step in that development.

Providing opportunities, strengthen productivity, learning by doing and chipping in the economies of scale.

However, Mr Moses Ogwal, PSFU manager policy advocacy, said that BoU spends at least 9 per cent of the country’s GDP which equivalent to $3 billion (Shs10.8 trillion) every year to stabilise the economy.

“If this same amount is spent on supporting the local producers through BUBU, it will stabilise the economy,” Mr Ogwal note.

He said if BUBU is supported, BoU would save this money.

60 per cent of the National Budget goes in development and most of it is for construction. Out this, 90 per cent is done by foreign companies and once this money is paid, it is remitted back to the respective countries.

On the claim that BUBU will jeorpodise the EAC export market agenda, Mr Ogwal proposed that the policy be harmonised at regional level.

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