The Prime Minister Dr Ruhakana Rugunda has said that industrialisation is one of the surest means through which the scourge of unemployment among the Ugandan population and slow economic growth will be decisively addressed.

He noted that government will continue to invest in the required ingredients necessary for industrialization such as power and infrastructure.

PM Rugunda delivers his remarks during the high level policy dialogue on industralisation at Imperial Royale Hotel on Tuesday

“It’s a commitment of government to bring down the cost of electricity in this country. We therefore hope that with Karuma and Isimba power projects plugged into the national grid, the cost of electricity will be tremendously reduced from the current USD 12 cents to USD 5 cents,” the Premier said.

The Premier made these remarks during the high level policy dialogue on industrialisation organised under the theme “Realizing the promises of green growth: Promoting sustainable Industrialisation in Uganda” held at Imperial Royale hotel on Tuesday.

Dr Rugunda noted that the dialogue will broaden the understanding of key stake holders, policy makers and a number of partners on the role of sustainable industrialisation to accelerate inclusive green growth, adding that government also supports the dialogue as part of its wider efforts to increase resilience and diversification of Uganda’s economy.

“We have already laid the foundation necessary for rapid economic growth through stable macro-economic environment and heavy investments in infrastructure development. We are now working to build a resilient economy that will withstand domestic and foreign shocks and we hope to achieve this by promoting sustainable development through diversification of our economy from low productivity to high productivity sectors,” the Prime Minister said.

The Premier added that in order for the government to fully progress in this economic transformation, it has prioritized strengthening of natural resources such as oil and gas, water resources, minerals, tourism and agriculture as the fundamentals to harness opportunities in this regard.

PM Rugunda chats with Dr Arkebe Equbay, Minister and Special Advisor to the PM of Ethiopia during the high level policy dialogue on Industrialisation at Imperial Royale hotel (Photo by PMPU)

The Minister of Trade, Industry and Cooperatives, Amelia Kyambadde said that the government prioritises industrialisation as evidenced in Uganda’s vision through NDPII, where it targets to boost the shell of industrialisation from 25% to 31% as well as increase the labour force in the industrial sector from 7% to 26%.

She said industrialisation is high on NRM’s agenda, adding that this has led to significant industrial development since 1986.

Hon Kyambadde however note that although the industrial sector is still facing a number of challenges including inadequate physical structure, low technology and innovation capability, low levels of skills, limited power supply and high costs of finance among others, the government is doing whatever it takes to intervene in solving these problems including establishing hydropower dams to supply power, setting up vocational institutions to enable and enhance skilling up as well as promoting dialogue to propose solutions to accelerate industrialisation.

She called upon the people to support and enhance the growth of local manufacturers through promoting the Buy Uganda, Build Uganda (BUBU) policy.

The UN Resident Coordinator to Uganda, Rosa Malango was optimistic that the discussions will energise Ugandans’ level of interest in industrial development.

The dialogue was attended by a number of delegates including the Minister and Special Advisor to the Prime Minister of Ethiopia Dr Arkebe Equbay who delivered a key note address during the dialogue.

ENDS

BY DOREEN NASASIRA