Commodities

Uganda to start commercial production of fertilizers

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By ISMAIL MUSA LADU

Posted  Wednesday, July 23  2014 at  01:00

In Summary

Country imports about 50,000 metric tonnes annually.

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Kampala.

Government has issued a licence to Chinese company to start commercial manufacturing of fertilizers within two years.
Guangzhou Dongsong Energy Group, the company licensed to explore and develop the phosphate industry in Tororo, said they are prepared to start operations in 2016.
“We have assessed the viability of the mineral reserves and confirmed that they are economical. The people affected by our activities have been identified, property evaluated and compensation is on-going,” the firm’s legal advisor, Mr Dennis Kusasira, said in a press statement issued by the Ministry of Energy and Mineral Development last week.
He continued: “Everyone is happy and supportive of the project. We are just waiting for the chief government valuer’s decision so that we compensate those who have claims. We have also already submitted environmental impact assessment to the National Environment Management Authority (NEMA).”
Mr Kusasira made the revelation last weekend during a presentation of the Sukulu Phosphate Development Work Plan to the technical team of the Department of Geological Surveys and Mines of the Ministry of Energy and Mineral Development in Entebbe Offices.
According to the draft National Fertiliser Strategy, Uganda imports about 50,000 metric tons of fertilizers, a volume that is still below the required one million tonnes annually.
The draft document also pointed out that currently the country produces at just about 30 percent of its agricultural potential due to lack of replenishing the depleted soils.
Production of fertilizers is expected to boost commercial agriculture that cannot thrive without the use fertilizers in mass production.

iladu@ug.nationmedia.com