His Excellency President Yoweri Museveni has expressed gratitude towards exporters in Uganda for working towards Uganda’s journey of attaining a middle income status exhibited through their vibrant and dynamic work in the export sector of the country.
The President made these remarks in his speech that was delivered by the Prime Minister Dr Ruhakana Rugunda at the 12th Presidents Export Awards ceremony organised under the theme “To Attain Middle Income Status in 2020” at Imperial Royale Hotel on Thursday.
Mr Museveni said that the rewarding ceremony of exports aims at promoting quality and enhancing competiveness, sensitization and creating awareness about the importance of exports as well as rallying Ugandans to associate with the export agenda.
The President said the National Resistance Movement (NRM) Government remains committed to creating and sustaining the conditions that will take Uganda into a middle income status and beyond.
He also added that government will continue to design policies and regulations that encourage and enhance business development in Uganda.
“We have prioritised infrastructure development by investing in energy, railway and road network. We are also promoting tourism, strengthening supervision to improve efficiencies in the running of government, addressing strategic bottlenecks that affect our productivity such as corruption among others as we focus on human capital development and strategic support for the private sector in order to invest in this growing sector,” the President said.
He however noted that there are still bottlenecks which need to be addressed if Uganda is to develop faster. The bottlenecks mentioned included inadequate human capital development, undeveloped infrastructure, inefficient small markets, and low contribution of manufacturing to the national economy, underdevelopment of the service sector and the subsistence nature of Agriculture.
The President also noted that the bottle necks can only be overcome if the country develops its financial services sector to bring more Ugandans on board and mobilize savings.
Mr. Museveni also commended the Ministry of Trade and Industry and Uganda Export Promotion Board for organising the event aimed at revamping the export sector in the nation.
The Minister of Trade and Industry, Amelia Kyambadde said the government has enhanced the export sector and industry through the National Development Export Strategy which aims at promoting establishment of industries, improvement of trade infrastructure through bodies like UNBS that ensures standards and quality in addition to availing market intelligence to the Small and Medium Enterprises(SMEs) among others.
Kyambadde urged the exporters to work with the government in reducing the current trade deficit.
The Executive Director of Uganda Export Promotion Board, Elly Twineyo Kamugisha stressed the need to boost local production as well as producing for the export market.
“We need to produce for the export market if we are to grow like other economies, however we need the cover the aspects of quality and quantity of the commodity on the market,” Mr Kamugasha said.
Roofings Group Limited won the Exporter of the year award while Ambassador Alintuma Nsambu won the Ambassador of the year award.
Other companies that scoped awards included: Nile Breweries Limited, Uganda Breweries Limited, Escom Uganda, UGACOF Uganda, Movit Uganda, BIDCO Limited, Mukwano group, and Kakira Sugar Works Uganda Limited among others.
By Doreen Nasasira
Monday, 12 December 2016