Islamabad: Pakistan and Uganda enjoyed historic political relations, which should be transformed into growing trade and economic relations as bilateral trade between the two countries was far less than the available potential, observed H.E. Dr. Asuman Kiyingi, Minister of State for Foreign Affairs and In-charge of Regional Cooperation of the Republic of Uganda while addressing business community at Islamabad Chamber of Commerce and Industry. The Minister was accompanied by H.E. Dr. Mohammad Ahmed Kissule, Ambassador of Uganda accredited to Pakistan, Mr. Dennis Tumukunde Personal Assistant to the Minister, Mr. Mawanika Brian Phenox Second Secretary Embassy of Uganda in Iran and Mr. K.K. Ahsan Wagan Director (Africa), Ministry of Foreign Affairs of Pakistan.
He said Uganda was an agricultural country with 90 percent arable land and both countries could share experiences & expertise in irrigation, mechanized farming and value addition of agro products to achieve mutually beneficial results. He said Uganda offered best investment opportunities with easy access to big market of 200 million people of East African Community and Pakistani investors should explore Uganda for investment and joint ventures in areas including energy, food processing, pharmaceuticals, oil & gas and extraction of iron ore etc. He said Uganda was producing quality tea and coffee and wanted to sell these products directly to Pakistan.
He appreciated the role of Pakistan for providing trainings to Uganda in various fields including diplomatic, medical & scientific research and also commended Pakistan’s private sector for promoting education in his country led by the University of Lahore. He stressed that these good ties should be used for strengthening trade and commerce between the two countries. He said that President of the Republic of Uganda H.E. Mr. Yoweri Museveni would visit Pakistan this year and he had come to Pakistan to explore areas of cooperation that could be beneficial for both countries. He said that Islamabad Chamber of Commerce should sign MoU with Uganda Chamber of Commerce for establishing Joint Business Council that would be helpful in enhancing bilateral trade and economic relations between the two countries.
In his welcome address, Muzzamil Hussain Sabri, President, Islamabad Chamber of Commerce and Industry said that Pakistan’s “Look Africa Policy” reflected its keen desire to improve relations with African countries and added that strengthening trade cooperation with Uganda would contribute positively in achieving these objectives.
He said strong cooperation between both countries would be mutually beneficial as Pakistan provided easy access to Uganda to huge markets of South and Central Asia while Uganda provided Pakistan better access to big African market. He said both countries should facilitate enhanced direct interaction between private sectors in order to realize available business opportunities. He said ICCI would try to organize a delegation for Uganda to explore business matchmakings and new avenues of mutual collaboration. M. Shakeel Munir, SVP ICCI presented vote of thanks and M. Ashfaq Hussain Chatha Vice President ICCI was also present at the occasion.