Deals worth over $300 million in investment have already been negotiated, pending signing that will be happening anytime this week, UIA Director-General, Mr Robert Mukiza has revealed.
These investments he said are some of the benefits being accrued from the early days of the Dubai 2020 Expo.
According to Mr Mukiza, by the end of the expo, which is six months away, the country is looking at cashing in more than $4 billion worth of investments which should translate into hundreds if not thousands of jobs.
He said this at the ongoing Dubai Expo also known as World Expo which is being hosted from October 01, 2021 to March 31, 2022. The Expo was originally scheduled for October 20, 2020 to April 10, 2021, was postponed due to the Covid-19 pandemic.
During the opening ceremony of the Uganda National Day during the World Trade Expo in Dubai, UAE, President Museveni made a case for Uganda as an investment destination, saying the country is well placed to facilitate trade and investment across the continent.
According to President Museveni, Uganda is in the “right place and at the right time” to engage as well as provide a pathway for continental trade and investment, something that is in line with the Dubai Expo 2020 theme: Connecting minds, creating the future sets us on the right path.
Speaking at the celebration to mark the Pearl of Africa (Uganda) National Day, the first of its kind so far for an African country, President Museveni described the Dubai 2020 Expo as an avenue where the world can meet and speak about prosperity, before noting that will not be a spectator in this space.
He said Uganda is open to investors capable of even engaging in large production of goods and services as the country’s infrastructure has since improved.
“Additionally, Uganda doesn’t just have a ready domestic market of over 40 million people to offer, but also an additional East African market of over 130 million people as well as the link to the continental market through the African Free Continental Trade Area (AfCTA),” Mr Museveni said.
Then there is the EU, US, and Chinese market. All this, according to the President is up for grabs.
Culturally, President Museveni said the East Africa and the Gulf States are already linked, citing Kiswahili language, a widely spoken lingua in the region, as one of the evidence of the connection between the two regions. And that should result in more business partnerships between the two regions.
President Museveni in his remarks also pointed out that Africa as a continent should learn from UAE for turning a desert country into a modern country with admirable infrastructure, something that continues to elude the majority of African countries.
As for the UAE leadership, they are looking forward to working with Uganda to recover from the implications of COVID-19 and grow trade to surpass pre-COVID-19 levels. They also intend to expand the UAE-Uganda partnership in fields of biodiversity, agro-processing, renewable energy, and tourism, let alone strengthening cultural ties.