‘Embrace joint ventures to win contracts’

Wednesday September 9 2015

By Joseph Kato

KAMPALA. Local contractors have been told to embrace joint ventures if they want to ably address problems hampering the industry.
Mr Heinz G Rittmann, the executive director of German Small and Medium construction companies (GSMCC), said unity is the only way local companies can generate the required expertise, financial, labour and tool capacity to win contracts.
He was speaking at a joint venture workshop for Uganda National Association for Building and Civil Engineering Contractors (Unabcec).

Mr Rittmann said for the joint ventures to blossom, trust and honest must be beyond reasonable doubt. He highlighted selfishness, backbiting and lack of general commitment as the key factors that fail joint ventures.
Citing an example of Sierra Leon where GSMCC has helped to develop the industry, Mr Rittmann said: “We have invested more than $10m (about Shs36b) in Sierra Leon’s construction industry. We are ready to do the same here (Uganda) so that the industry can develop. However, we shall only work with honest, trusted and registered companies.”
Unabcec executive director Michel Mivule Pinto admitted that the local construction industry is crippling because proprietors lack knowledge about the usefulness of joint ventures.

“There was a joint venture reached by two construction companies with Uganda National Roads Authority but it ended into a catastrophe because of selfishness,” said Mr Mivule.
He added that partnering with GSMCC will help to boost the Uganda building industry in terms of expertise, finance, labour, research and tools.
Mr Mivule urged government to streamline the industry by wiping out fake firms that tarnish the industry by doing shoddy work.