The size and spectrum of the entrepreneurial class is one of the bottlenecks to rapid economic growth including challenges in filling the gaps in the services and manufacturing sector and those that relate to human intellect, President Yoweri Museveni has told German businessmen urging them, that the quickest way to profitability is to get people with the technology and money to partner with local stakeholders in Uganda to invest in various sectors especially tourism and trade.
“My coming here is because of the issue of the entrepreneurship which is one of the bottlenecks – the size and spectrum of the entrepreneurial class. If you choose to invest in our country and promote tourism and trade will all prosper,” he said.
The President was addressing various German businessmen under their umbrella body, the Hamburg Chamber of Commerce in Hamburg, Germany.
“When we invite you to come and invest, it’s because we see strategic advantages for you (profitability) and for us (job creation and skills transfer),’ he said, urging them to consider exploiting value addition in various sectors.
President Museveni described Uganda as a land of abundant opportunities but which is still lacking in capital and the spectrum of entrepreneurial class in investment, trade and tourism.
President Museveni who is on a two-day working visit to the Federal Republic of Germany was guest-speaker at the Hamburg Chamber of Commerce said that Uganda’s entrepreneurial class was growing but needed partnerships in manufacturing and the services sector that depended on human intellect. He also told them that Uganda’s growth rate, which has been at 6.6% for the last 20 years, is bound to grow in double digits with the development of major economic infrastructures like hydroelectric power generation, roads, railways and ICT.
He said the major areas of investment in the Ugandan economy included agro processing particularly in grain milling, fruit processing, starch from maize and bananas, textiles manufacturing and the leather industry. He also identified mineral beneficiation in gold, iron ore, alluminium and coltan. He also said that the packaging industry and glass manufacturing, human and livestock drug manufacturing and solar powered water pumps for irrigation were other areas of investment.
He said that Uganda and Africa are a rapidly growing consumer economy and assured them of ready markets with high profitability ratios un paralleled anywhere in the world.
President Museveni told them that five elements inter linked in a successful business were the producer and consumer, profitability, infrastructure and prosperity, emphasizing that businesses cannot survive without production and consumption.
The Chief Executive Officer of the Hamburg Chamber of Commerce Dr. Schmidt-Trenz welcomed the Ugandan leader to the 350 years old Chamber of Commerce and said that although 34 African countries collaborate with the Chamber, foreign trade from Africa represents only 2% of all trade through the hub.
He hoped that President Museveni’s visit would go a long way in contributing to the enhancement of bilateral trade and commerce.
The Chairman of Africa Verein Association Dr Stefan Liabing said he was delighted that President Museveni accepted the invitation and assured him that the Association was determined to make German investments in Uganda a success story in Africa.
President Museveni was accompanied by the Minister of Trade, Industry and Cooperatives Hon. Amelia Kyambadde, the Chairman of Uganda Manufacturers Association Mr. Amos Nzei, Uganda’s Ambassador to Germany Mr. Marcel Tibaleka, members from Uganda’s Investment Authority, Tourism and the private sector in Uganda.