Trade revenues slashed following crisis in Egypt
Posted Wednesday, October 30 2013 at 01:00
Export revenues from Uganda to Egypt have dropped to Shs4.5 billion in 2012 from Shs14 billion in 2011.
If political stability does not return to Egypt soon, the trade volumes between Uganda and Egypt are likely to reduce further.
Since the breakout of the revolution in 2011 and the subsequent civil strife, trade between both countries has been on a speedy decline, hurting the country’s annual exports.
In an interview with Uganda’s Ambassador to Egypt, Mr Richard Laus Angualia, said: “The turmoil has seen the trade relations we have with Egypt grossly affected.”
He said before the turmoil, Egypt exported goods to Uganda worth $59 million (Shs149 billion) and this has since gone down to $21.7 million (Shs54 billion) between April 2011 and December 2012.
Export revenues from Uganda to Egypt have also dropped to $1.8 million (Shs4.5 billion), as of the first half of 2012 from $5.7 million (Shs14 billion) in 2011.
“These statistics were last gathered in 2011. Due to the turmoil, we have not been able to carry out another research but signs show the trend is declining,” Mr Angualia added.
Uganda exports mainly coffee, tea, fish powdered pilk, sim sim (Sesame) and leather, among other commodities to Egypt.
The imports from Egypt to Uganda include clothes, electrical appliances and furniture, among others.
Star Café is one of the Ugandan companies doing business with Egypt and has been affected by the turmoil.
Mr Elijah Karanja, the managing director of Star Café, said: “We process our instant coffee from Egypt and transporting the product [coffee] to Egypt amidst the turmoil has been hard. Transporting the product used to take 60 days but it now takes more than six to seven months.”