By Frank Kamuntu
Gulu: Business between East African countries is expected to become much easier when Uganda completes construction of a modern logistics hub just closer to the border with its northern neighbour-South Sudan.
The ground-breaking of the multi-billion Hub was graced by President Yoweri Museveni who also commissioned the €47.6 million Tororo Gulu Railway rehabilitation.
— UK in Uganda 🇬🇧 🇺🇬 (@UKinUganda) October 24, 2020
According to the design, Logistics Hub will consist of Custom Offices, Container Cleaning & repair, Gate Complex, Railway Siding, Vehicle Holding Area and Traffic Flows, Perimeter Walls, Access Road, Weigh in Motion Bridge, Container Freight Station(CFS), Administration Complex and others.
The European Commission in Uganda said, “We are funding the projects with the government of Uganda, the United Kingdom through Trade-Mark East Africa to reinstate the railway and improve logistics efficiency.”
The Gulu Logistics Hub will serve the trade corridors of Kampala, Gulu, Elegu/Nimule, Juba Trade Corridor and Gulu – Packwach Goli, Padea, Lia, Vura DRC Trade Corridor. It is expected to significantly reduce barriers to trade for northern Uganda and her neighbours particularly South Sudan, eastern DR Congo and parts of North-western Kenya.
It is worth noting that during the four-year military campaign led by Museveni who deposed President Milton Obote, the locomotive railway line was destroyed and looted causing a devastating injury to Uganda’s economy which resulted in high transportation costs for both goods and services.
Meanwhile, as we report, imports of transport & logistics services make up 55% of Uganda’s total service imports while Uganda’s transport & logistics exports are only 3.7% of Uganda’s total services exports. According to Trade Mark East Africa, such inefficiency costs the country over US$ 784,611,160M (3 trillion UGX).
It adds, “In recent years, UG has played a vital role as a distribution hub for S. Sudan and the Eastern DRC. Improving logistics services will create employment opportunities. About 208k people are currently employed in the logistics sector in UG, a number that could rise to 522k by 2030.”
In the same vein, Museveni commissioned the 1st Phase of the Gulu Water Supply and Sanitation Project meant to upgrade the existing water treatment plant from a production capacity of 4, 000,000 litres of water per day to 10, 000,000 litres of water per day for Gulu City and surrounding areas.
I commissioned the 1st Phase of the Gulu Water Supply and Sanitation Project. This will upgrade the existing water treatment plant from a production capacity of 4, 000,000 liters of water per day to 10, 000,000 liters of water per day for Gulu City and surrounding areas. pic.twitter.com/XA7JCx0Ijs
— Yoweri K Museveni (@KagutaMuseveni) October 24, 2020