The West Nile Investment summit was organized by the Uganda investment Authority (UIA) on the 9th April 2022 in Omboro Village, Nebbi District. The Chief Guest at the Summit was the Minister of Finance, Planning and Economic Development Hon. Matia Kasaija.
The summit was attended by the Minister of State for Trade and Investment Hon. Evelyn Anite, the Minister for Northern Uganda Hon. Kwiyucwiny Grace, the Minister of state for Defense Veteran Affairs Hon. Olero Hilder, various members of Parliament, delegations from the Democratic Republic of Congo (DRC) and South Sudan; Representatives of leading Private & public sector players such as Private Sector Foundation Uganda (PSFU), Uganda Revenue Authority (URA), National Water and Sewerage Corporation (NW&SC), Uganda National Roads Authority (UNRA) and Uganda Electricity Transmission Company limited (UETCL)
The area LC 1 Chairman thanked all summit participants and spoke about the increased employment opportunities & reduced Rural-Urban migration as a result of creation of an industrial park in the region.
Mr Angelo Izama, the Board representative from Uganda Revenue Authority (URA) explained the importance of the investment certificate and taxation related issues to the domestic and international investors at the summit.
Eng. Rachael Arinda Barinsanvu clarified to the delegation that electricity will be available to facilitate investment thanks to a World Bank funded project covering the areas of Kole sub station, Nebbi and Arua. The 132KVA Nebbi substation will be commissioned by the end of 2022.
Mr. Morrison Rwakakamba, the Chairman Board of Directors UIA spoke about Uganda’s improved investment climate that has led to signing of critical agreements such as the oil and gas agreement and the treaty of accession into East African Community (EAC) by the DRC. He encouraged participants to tap into the opportunities such agreements create in the region.
Access to Finance for domestic investors & businesses is also available through varied sources such as the UIA SME portal. The investors in the West Nile have been prioritized due to the immense investment opportunities in the region.
The head of the delegation from DRC Mr. Patrick Mutombo spoke about the legal framework for investment in DRC and the various investment opportunities therein. “This is a time to act and not listen to the various speeches as it has been in the past,” He said.
Speaking of the challenges of investment in the region, the Minister of State for Northern Uganda, Hon. Kwiyucwiny Grace mentioned that there are untapped natural resources and recommended that there is need to conduct a value chain analysis for the goods and products that come from the Northern region on Uganda.
Hon. Evelyn Anite appreciated the government strategy to build capacity and enhance value addition. She spoke about the development of the industrial park in Mbale district that now has atleast 17 factories and she was positive that West Nile will grow into an industrial pillar of Uganda’s economy.
Hon. Matia Kasaija concluded the summit by saying that the move to industrialize West Nile region was a very important step towards achieving the National development Plan III (NDPIII). He also reiterated the benefits of the Parish Development Model (PDM) as a tool to drive demand & supply in the community.