East African Medical Vitals, the manufacturers of latex rubber, medical and surgical gloves, will by the end of this month start establishing a Shs36b condom manufacturing plant at the Kampala Industrial and Business Park.
The money for the planned factory, according to Mr Brian Kavuya, East African Medical Vitals managing director, has already been secured from Uganda Development Corporation (UCD). Speaking during a guided tour organised for Trade Minister Francis Mwebesa, State Trade Minister David Bahati and officials from UDC to assess the capacity of the company, Mr Kavuya said the factory will be one of the biggest producers of locally manufactured latex rubber condoms as plans to establish a latex manufacturing plant are now in advanced stages.
However, he said, they will initially rely mostly on imported rubber for mass production, noting that Uganda’s current rubber production is not enough to meet required quantities for the initial production of at least 9,000 pieces per hour and six million per month.
During the meeting, Mr Mwebesa said the condoms will automatically have a market since government has directed National Medical Stores to purchase all certified pharmaceutical manufactured products produced by local companies.
“There is no way National Medical Stores can purchase medical equipment from foreign companies when there are licensed pharmaceutical companies that produce good equipment for medical use,” he said.
Mr Kavuya had earlier also urged government to protect and create markets for local producers through instituting import duties on imported products that are also manufactured in Uganda.
According to a 2011 report by United Nations Population Fund, Uganda uses approximately 98 million condoms annually with more than half of these distributed by government.