By Ben Ssebuguzi
Uganda is still struggling with the high import bill which is brought about by low export receipts hence causing a trade deficit. According to statistics, Uganda’s imports are USD$ 7B against USD$ 2.5B. This is partly brought about by lack of information about what we produce, where, and how we produce. This creates an information vacuum which leads our people to consume foreign made products.
According to Buy Uganda Build Uganda (BUBU) government policy passed by cabinet in 2014,it aims at ensuring a vibrant diversified domestic trade in goods and services through promoting the consumption of locally produced goods and its implementation strategy includes among others Stakeholder involvement through a communication strategy.
Among the companies that have broken the jinx to be one of the leading manufacturers of water resource products in the region is Gentex Enterprises Ltd. Gentex Enterprises have served Ugandans since 1991, and they have stood the test of time producing ISO 9001:2000 certified range of products ranging from UPVC pipes HDPE pipes, PPR pipes, water tank, WPC doors, SPC floor Tiles which have continued to support the water resource of Uganda where the central government, local government, NGO and private companies have used their products to create hygienic environment in our country. They produce wide range of plastic piping system from 20mm to 1500m in size relevant to DIN and ISO International standards. According to Mukesh, the Marketing and Sales manager, stated that Gentex enterprises and her competitors contribute 90% of the specialized water transport sector products on the local market hence reducing the amount of foreign exchange out flow in our country.
Besides, Gentex Enterprises also contributes some foreign exchange for our country through exporting to our neighboring countries like DRC, Congo, Rwanda, Burundi, Tanzania and Kenya. On top of that, they also employ hundreds of Ugandans directly and indirectly hence creating a multiplier effect to the economy.
During the recent International Youth day celebrations in Kampiringisa, Mpigi district, H.E Yoweri Kaguta implored the youths to help him reduce the high demand for imports, and that is why Youth power research Uganda started an advocacy program of helping Ugandans to know what our investors produce and also sensitize Ugandans to support our local industrial sector as per the country’s strategic plans.
We continue to be so grateful to all Accounting officers who have ensured procurement of local products as per the government directive of buy Ugandan products first and also request all agencies in the water and sanitation sector to continue supporting our local producers in order to transform our society from peasantry to a modern economy as we continue to have an organized society which is free from water bone diseases.
Team Leader Youth power research Uganda