Govt Launches ‘Buy Uganda Build Uganda’ Policy to Promote Local Products

Prime Minister Ruhakana Rugunda launches the BUBU policy along with the Trade Minister Amelia Kyambadde on Thursday

Government has Thursday launched a policy aimed at promoting Uganda’s locally produced goods and making them competitive on both domestic and foreign markets.

The 2014 policy tagged ‘Buy Uganda Build Uganda’ (BUBU) which was a Presidential directive intends to develop a vibrant dynamic private sector that transforms local products in order to meet the required standards.

In the long term, check the policy aims to boost Uganda’s exports and balance the current trade imbalance. In 2014 Uganda exported goods to a tune of USD 2.6 million in comparison with imports worth USD 6.1 million.

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For a long time, more about manufacturers in Uganda have decried the unfair policies that gave much leeway to foreign goods in the domestic market which has forced most of the local businesses to crumble.

BUBU targets to have a 20% minimum of government procurement by value awarded to local products and services. It also seeks to give 50% of shelf space in supermarkets to local products and 50% of local resources utilized in production.

Under the new policy, dosage all government Ministries, Departments and Agencies (MDAs) will be obliged abide by guidelines during procurement processes.

Some of the products that government will prioritize in the implementation of the policy include; construction materials, oil and gas, textiles, leather, footwear, foods, beverages, stationary and furniture. In the area of services; construction, consultancy, insurance, legal and accounting will take top priority.

Prime Minister Dr. Ruhakana Rugunda who officially launched the policy said; “We want Ugandans to appreciate that when we buy Ugandan products we contribute to employment creation, increased tax revenues transfer of technologies and economic growth.”

He said that the domestic market should be the first priority for the local traders.

Rugunda revealed that government has developed guidelines for the reservation schemes under the PPDA Act which include; 30% of value of works through local sub contractors, procurement of uniforms and clothing material, voltage cables and selected medicines. The said guidelines took effect on March 1 this year.

“It is absurd that when we go into our supermarkets, our minds as individuals are left wondering whether Uganda produces anything worth selling. The Ministry of Trade should engage owners of supermarkets so that local products are given conspicuous display,” he added.

According to the Minister of Trade, Amelia Kyambadde the implementation of the BUBU policy will tackle issues of standards and ensuring that manufacturers conform to the standards as set by Uganda National Bureau of Standards (UNBS).

Earlier, the Head of the Uganda Manufacturers Association (UMA) Amos Nzeyi had raised complaints regarding the low industrial utilization capacity (at 53%) saying that of the Ush 6 trillion procurement budget, local manufacturers get only 10%.

“We request that government empowers UNBS to acquire equipment for testing all the local products so as to ensure they meet the required standards. This equipment only coats about USD 2.3 million,” Nzeyi said.


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