Gulf Countries turn to Ugandan cereals, vegetables and fruits

Wednesday May 6 2015

Sheikh Saleh Kamel (C) the President Islamic

Sheikh Saleh Kamel (C) the President Islamic Chamber of Commerce and Agriculture being ushered to the High table by President Museveni during the opening of the 31st annual general assembly of the Islamic Chamber of Commerce, Industry and Agriculture at the Serena Hotel. Looking on is Ms. Olive Kigongo, the president Uganda National Chamber of commerce and Industry. PHOTO BY STEPHEN OTAGE 

By Stephen Otage

Farmers have been advised to position themselves for a new emerging market in the Gulf region where there is an assured market for Ugandan fruits, vegetable and cereals.

In an exclusive interview, Ms Olive Kigongo, the president Uganda National Chamber of Commerce and Industry said Ugandans should brace themselves for the new market in the Gulf region because the Arab countries import all their food and as long as they can fulfill the quantities and quality of food required, there is an assured market for avocados, pine apples, passion fruits and vegetables from Uganda.

“The Islamic Chamber of Commerce, Industry and Agriculture has identified 57 companies which are interested in different investments in agriculture because Arab countries import all their food and as long as we can satisfy the quantities and quality, this is the opportunity,” she said yesterday.

She added that the Gulf market now opens to Uganda following last weeks’ 31st general assembly of Islamic Chamber of Commerce, Industry and Agriculture hosted in Kampala where 57 heads of chambers of commerce from the Gulf Countries attended on the invitation of the Uganda Chamber of Commerce Industry.

“Previously we had a challenge in following up these opportunities but we think we shall do a serious follow up with these people because they are potential investors and we have direct flights to the Gulf including Etihad Airways which opened office here last week,” she said.

President Museveni also stressed in his speech that agriculture and agro-processing in Uganda still suffer under investment and the President welcomed private investment in agriculture including in the production of crops, beef and dairy products.

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“Government recognizes that UNCCI is the largest umbrella organization of the private sector with over 10,000 members and it is therefore the bridge to connect you to the Uganda business arena,” the president told the delegates.

sotage@ug,nationmedia.com

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