President Yoweri Museveni has condemned some countries that are trying to curtail the market of Ugandan products, assuring stakeholders that this move will be hard to achieve by the critics on his watch.
“Our products are of good quality and at relatively low prices, I wonder why someone would curtail the market” he wondered.
The President made the remarks on Thursday while commissioning 16 factories and groundbreaking for the construction of 9 new ones at Sino Uganda- Mbale Industrial Park in Mbale City.
Currently, the Sino Uganda-Mbale Industrial Park has 36 factories composed of 20 factories in operation, 5 factories under construction, and 12 at a stage of assembling plant and machinery.
Museveni at this function commended the friends of Uganda especially the Chinese who have been working on mutual understanding and cooperation with the East African country and Africa since 1949.
“In the past we were working together politically in the United Nations and other bodies but now I’m very glad the Chinese government is encouraging the Chinese companies that are government and private to go out and invest in Africa. I thank them so much,” he asserted.
The president also used this opportunity to explain that the government of Uganda created a conducive environment that has enabled investors to come and invest in the country and he reassured investors of a ready market for their products.
“These investors have spectacles that enable them to detect where there’s money. It’s upon us to provide a conducive environment that enables whoever wants to invest to come. That is our role. With a proper policy, everything does itself, that is why a person you least know about approaches you that they want to set up a textile factory” the president explained.
“Many people don’t know that having a market is wealth. We have a market for Ugandans of 46 million and on that, we add the East African market of 130 million people as well as the African market of 1.5 billion people. All those people have needs which should be got using money from their pockets.” He added.
The President further discouraged Ugandans from importing second hand clothes as a move to support home brands and local employment.
“The second-hand clothes are for dead people. When a white person dies, they gather their clothes and send them to Africa. We should stop wearing them. We have people here who produce new clothes but they cannot infiltrate the market because the second-hand clothes are already all-over.” He asserted.
In his remarks, Hon. Matia Kasaija the Minister of Finance, Planning and Economic Development, noted that he was happy that Uganda is in the process of achieving its Industrialization goal.
“When you appointed me as Minister of Finance, you told me that I should spearhead Industrialization and I’m happy to note that although the journey is still long, we have managed to achieve some success,” Hon. Kasaija said.
“This project is helping us to create jobs for our youth. If we could get more enterprises similar to this, then my worry about having a job for every youth who comes on the job market would be history.” He added.”
On her part, the Minister of Energy and Mineral Development, Hon. Ruth Nankabirwa assured that residents of Mbale city that they are working tooth and nail to solve the problem of electricity in their area.
“Your Excellency, I’m aware of the challenges of electricity here. I assure the residents that we are working hard to solve the problem. We shall have a mobile station to improve the supply of power.”
The Ambassador of China to Uganda H.E Zhang Lizhong hailed the existing good relationship between China and Uganda. He said China and Uganda are working together to implement the nine programs announced by President Xi Jin Ping of China in the latest China -Africa Summit.
In his submission, Zhang Zhigang the Chairperson of Sino-Uganda Industrial Park Mbale, thanked President Museveni for his unwavering support in realizing the dream come true plus the leadership of Mbale and all the people of the area for their support.
Mbale Industrial Park produces a variety of goods such as glass, textiles, household detergents, mobile phones, smart televisions, baby diapers, clothes, LED bulbs, tubes, electric meters, and stockings.
This event was also attended by the Minister of Trade, Industry and Cooperatives Francis Mwebesa, the Minister of State in the same Ministry Hon. David Bahati, and the chairperson of NRM Women’s league Ms. Lidya Wanyoto, among others.