PSFU bets on new Mbarara offices to open up regional markets 

Mbarara City Mayor Robert Mugabe (infront), PSFU officials, and others inspect a section of the newly opened western Uganda regional offices in Mbarara City. Photo / Rajab Mukombozi 

What you need to know:

  • The office in Mbarara City will be a catalyst for exploring new markets and key in business growth and resource mobilisation 

Private Sector Foundation Uganda (PSFU) is betting on its first regional offices outside Kampala to enhance the potential of regional markets as well as improve private sector operations in western Uganda. 

The office in Mbarara City, Mr Stephen Asiimwe, the PSFU executive director said at the launch will be a catalyst for exploring new markets and key in business growth and resource mobilisation. 

“We want to improve access to business financing, advocacy and capacity building, access to regional and international markets, quality and quantity production, and value addition. Our objective is to ensure there is business growth, access to markets, and job creation,” he said, noting that western Uganda has a lot of untapped potential, especially in farming, transport, tourism, and hospitality, which must be exploited to create jobs. 

Therefore, Mr Asiimwe noted, PSFU has seen it necessary to establish a presence in the region to extend grants and assistance through programmes such as Generating Growth Opportunities and Productivity for Women Enterprises and Green Fund, which will subsequently, reduce the cost of doing businesses.  

Enhancing production capacity

PSFU will also support the region to connect with businesses across the country, with the view of sharing knowledge and enhancing production capacity beyond regional markets. 

Western Uganda remains one of Uganda’s main producers of milk, which, if well harnessed could be a driver in job creation and increase value and volume of exports.   

Thus, Mr Asiimwe said, by creating regional offices, PSFU is seeking for a way through which it can create a united private sector that is capable of sharing knowledge for the good of Uganda’s business agenda and speak with one strong voice to influence policies. 

Mbarara City Mayor Robert Mugabe Kakyebezi, asked PSFU to work on the issue of market access for many of the products produced in western Uganda, which he said, remains a challenge not only to the region but also Uganda as a whole. 

“People here are hardworking but they are frustrated by lack of market for their produce. You produce milk and sell a litre at Shs200. We hope that since you [PSFU] are here, you will open up market linkages,” he said, noting that PSFU should also enhance skills development to mitigate the challenge of youth unemployment. 

PSFU brings together several business associations, corporate bodies, and public sector agencies that support private sector growth to strengthen private sector capacity for effective policy advocacy and market competitiveness, both within and outside Uganda.