Trade minister Amelia Kyambadde said this is the time for the private sector to also consider value addition to locally available raw materials, such as animal skins and fruits, to substitute imports from Europe and China. Workers packing hot peppers at KK Foods, a fresh foods exporter. Some of the new markets are in COMESA AGRIBUSINESS
KAMPALA – As countries shut borders to cut the spread of the coronavirus, the private sector has been urged to consider exploiting new export markets and new product lines within Africa and to negotiate contracts with their suppliers, especially those based in hard-hit overseas countries.
Trade minister Amelia Kyambadde said this is the time for the private sector to also consider value addition to locally available raw materials, such as animal skins and fruits, to substitute imports from Europe and China.
She urged the private sector to utilise the abundant fruits and skins and hides to make juices and leather products, such as bags, belts, and shoes.
She said as the world locks down due to the coronavirus pandemic, Uganda could use her competitive advantage in agro production to supply food to affected countries and open new trade lines in Europe, Asia, and the Americas.
Due to the pandemic, some markets are experiencing the worst financial plunge since the 2008 financial crisis, as the human cost of the outbreak continues to rise. The economic cost continues to mount as well.
“It is time to think outside the box. Persistence of the pandemic may constrain sourcing of machinery and final consumables for traders, which will hinder buying and selling.
This presents an opportunity for locally produced consumables,” Kyambadde said.
“We need to be flexible and work on changing our mindsets. This could be an opportunity to find new routes, new suppliers and even new markets within the Africa Continental Free Trade Area or Common Market for Eastern and Southern Africa (COMESA),” she explained.
Kyambadde made the remarks at a dfcu Bank customers’ meeting at the Kampala Serena Hotel, to discuss the impact of the COVID-19 (coronavirus) outbreak on the global and local market.
During the meeting, a panel of experts weighed in on how Ugandan businesses will survive the global COVID-19 outbreakKyambadde pointed out that Uganda’s imports, worth $5.51b annually could be substituted for local or regional produced alternatives.She urged Ugandans who travel abroad for holidays to consider spending their dollars on local attractions in national parks. She also said Uganda’s private sector […]