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The Ministry of Trade and Industry

The  Ministry of Trade and Industry
Tel: 256-41-314000

Location: Plot 6/8, Parliamentary Avenue, Kampala, Uganda
Postal Address: P.O. Box 7103 Kampala,Uganda

State minister for industry, Michael Werikhe: Cosmetics manufacturers urged to seek regional markets
The state minister for industry, Michael Werikhe, has called upon Ugandan cosmetics manufacturers to seize trade opportunities with in the East Africa region and other global markets, to increase visibility of local brands in global markets.According to Werikhe, this would also multiply Uganda’s export volumes and level the balance of trade, which currently stands at a deficit of more than $3b (5.697 trillion). “These products are globally competitive in quality, but if we do not market them at the global level, we shall continue to lose as government and as individual manufacturers,” he said.This was on the side-lines of his tour of the Radiant cosmetics manufacturers premises at the UMA show grounds, Lugogo. Werikhe noted that Uganda’s economy is heavily dependent on imports and import demand still big, despite the progress made to narrow.“Therefore, if we are to achieve sustainable growth and development and structural transformation in Uganda, we must strengthen our external performance,” he said. He also emphasized the need for trade facilitation for Ugandan SMEs, noting that majority collapse due to skilling and market gaps. Read more
Trade Ministry: The economy’s unsung hero with funding challenges
In the grand scheme of things Ministry of Trade, Industry and cooperative is regarded as an underdog.This according to trade specialists, civil society organisations and a wide range of observers, explains why every financial year the ministry struggles to attract the kind of budget it deserves despite its massive role across the economic sector. It further emerged that the Trade ministry is not regarded as “juicy and powerful” as some other cabinet dockets, among them finance, planning and economic development where all decisions on matters resource and allocations happen.Until the arrival of Amelia Kyambadde as the Trade Minister, the docket appeared to be short of clout, energy and vibrancy.Lack of enough resources to implement the ministry programmes is Kyambadde’s biggest challenge.Read more
MOTI: Government moves to enforce quality meat standards for abattoirs
Government is planning a massive crackdown on abattoirs and butcheries that do not maintain minimum hygiene requirements, Daily Monitor has learnt. The decision by the Trade ministry is informed by the need to strengthen declining meat handling standards across the country.If this is done properly, senior industrial officer at the Trade ministry, Mr Peter Odong, said the quality of products such as beef will be guaranteed, let alone boost consumption on safety grounds.The crackdown will be done after personnel involved in meat handling including flaying and dressing staff, meat inspectors, graders of meat and supervisors on meat hygienic practices have undergone short training courses on hygienic practices and the need to maintain standards.Mr Odong, who is also the programme officer for Quality Infrastructure and Standards Programme at the ministry, confirmed the development in an interview early in the week. He said: “We are now training junior employees who directly handle meat and transact with the customers directly and not the managers or owners who are not directly involved in running the business.” Read more
MOTI: Beef industry asks for increased government support 
“We have tried to attract investors into the meat industry, but when they tour our abattoirs that are characterized by poor meat handling methods and low standards used by Ugandans, they never come back to invest,” Mukama told stakeholders in the industry at Uganda Industrial Research Institute (UIRI’s) conference hall in Kampala.During the meeting that was organised by the trade ministry in collaboration with Uganda National Bureau of Standards (UNBS), stakeholders including butchers were equipped with different skills in meat handling from animal to meat handling to improve on the quality and standards of meat produced.Mukama also noted that meat standards are still very low, and more effort is still needed to be put in, adding that players never mind about standards but only money while handling meat leading to production of poor quality meat that does not meet international standards.However, Capt. Denis Aubbery Saazi, managing director of Nsooba Slaughter House Ltd says before government thinks of attracting foreign investors, it should fully supports the local investors by improving their facilities. Read more
MSTI: Leather SMEs launch new market strategy
Small and medium enterprises making leather products can now manufacture quality products that can attract market at home, East African Community and COMESA region following the launch of the strategy that will guide the operations of the sector.East African community has a total population of about 125 million people while COMESA region has about 500 million people which is a huge market for leather products if they are of good quality.This is according to the minister of state for trade in charge of Industry, Dr.James Shinyabulo Mutende, while launching the leather strategy at Imperial Royal hotel in Kampala on."Without quality and following the standards required, we cannot compete on the global market whose taste and preferences are changing, so quality in our SMEs is a must," said Mutende. The strategy is looking at all aspects that will make the leather industry more attractive and competitive by addressing issues of quality and standards in addition to gender in the production process.Read more
PSOMT: Untaxed Egyptian juice imports draw fire from local producers
Trade agreement exempting Egypt’s products, particularly processed juice imports from being charged Value Added Tax (VAT) will cripple the juice sub-sector, the industry players have warned.The red flag was raised by Jakana Foods, a major scale commercial producer of natural fruit juices in the country, during a meeting between beverage makers and juice manufactures with Uganda National Bureau of Standards.However, the Permanent Secretary of the Ministry of Trade, Amb Julius Onen, in an interview denied the claims, saying there is no such arrangement in place.During the meeting attended by more than 150 industry players, the general manager of Jakana Foods, Ms Meg Jaquay, wondered how local industry players will favourably compete with the likes of Egypt who have a free trade agreement with Uganda. Read more
MOTI: Uganda needs more vehicle importing firms - govt official
Investment opportunities in import and clearing industry are yet to be fully exploited, the Permanent Secretary, ministry of Trade has said. Mr Julius Onen, while speaking about the entry of a new car importing and clearing company - Lagoon Holdings , said it is good news for both the consumers and the import and clearing industry. He said this is because it will heighten competition which could result into reduction of prices and better services.According to him, the economy is still wide open for massive investments in the import and clearing industry irrespective of the claim that the industry is saturated already with foreign car importers. “We welcome the new company (Lagoon Holdings whose brand name is CarPassport) because there is no such thing as saturation in this industry. This is a free market and we are not about to start regulating investment in this area,” Mr Onen said. Read more
Trade ministry pokes holes in Tobacco Bill
The Ministry Trade, Industry and Cooperatives has called for a balance between health and economic interests within the proposed Tobacco Control Bill 2014 before it is passed into law.The ministry noted that the tobacco industry greatly contributes to the economy with approximately Shs56 billion going directly to farmers’ pockets annually.Mr Oule Epyanu, the senior commercial officer at the ministry, said the Bill is biased on the consumption of tobacco and its health risks and does not provide any guidelines for the financial implications on the tobacco industry, thus calling for a total ban on the industry.“Certainly, there is a need for control and regulation of the sector. It should, however, be done in a way which strikes consensus between health and trade concerns”, Mr Epyanu said, while addressing a focus group meeting organised by Uganda Human Rights Commission in Kampala. Read more
MOTI: Highlights of China-Uganda relations
China continues to be one of Uganda’s leading trading partners. According to statistics from the Ministry of Trade, In 2012, the trade volume between the two countries came to $575.5 million, of which China’s exports were $546.01 million, and imports $29.49 million. This indicated that Uganda exports five per cent worth of what it imports from China.China has made this possible by employing a strategy that emphasizes a zero-tariff treatment to 95 percent of the products from the least developed African countries having diplomatic relations with China. The bilateral trade started soon after the establishment of the diplomatic relations.The Chinese government has made significant investments in Uganda mainly in the areas of infrastructural development such as road construction, hospitals, railway, electrical power and communications development.China imports leather, coffee, fish and food products from Uganda and exports light industry products, farm tools, textiles, pharmaceutical products, garments, ceramics to Uganda. Read more
Govt will go ahead with Pension sector liberalisation - Muhakanizi
The Finance ministry says the cost of paying pensioners through the Public Service Pension Scheme programme is impacting negatively on government budget.Reacting to criticisms from officials of the Gender ministry and the National Organisation of Trade Unions among others against the move to liberalise the pension sector in Kampala last week, Secretary to the Treasury Keith Muhakanizi said: “Government is tired of paying the cost of pensioners through the Public Services Pension Scheme and so the sector must be liberalised.”Mr Muhakanizi explained that the fiscal price of paying pensioners on government is high yet at the same time there are a lot of inefficiencies in the current Public Service Pension Scheme. Read more