Uganda minister welcomes Malaysian investors, highlights business opportunities

Uganda Lands, Housing and Urban Development Minister Isaac Musumba and State Investment, Industrial and Regional Development Committee chairman Datuk Seri Mohammad Nizar Jamaluddin chat during the Perak-Uganda Trade Gateway Forum in Ipoh September 4, 2019. — Picture by Farhan Najib
Uganda Lands, Housing and Urban Development Minister Isaac Musumba and State Investment, Industrial and Regional Development Committee chairman Datuk Seri Mohammad Nizar Jamaluddin chat during the Perak-Uganda Trade Gateway Forum in Ipoh September 4, 2019. — Picture by Farhan Najib

IPOH, Sept 4 — Uganda’s Lands, Housing and Urban Development Minister Isaac Musumba today welcomed foreign investors to his country highlighting that there was a strong potential for collaboration with Malaysia.

“We promise that there will not be any problem for foreigners to do business in our country.

“We have resorted the faith and confidence in foreign investors. The market is open for everyone, including Malaysian,” he told a press conference after attending the Perak-Uganda Trade Gateway Forum 2019 at Impiana hotel here.

Yesterday, Al Jazeera reported that five foreigners were killed and 189 people were arrested in the rallies linked to the anti-foreigners sentiment in Alexandra, South Africa on Tuesday.

The Qatari broadcaster also reported that hundreds of protesters in Pretoria set fire to buildings last week, looting mostly foreign-owned businesses.

Musumba said that while Uganda experienced similar sentiments in the early 1970s, these no longer existed and later administrations also made reparations to those affected.

“In 1971 and 1972, we had a president who expelled all foreigners from Uganda. Asian who invested in businesses, properties, real estate suffered losses because they were simply told to go.

“However, twenty years later, the current government realised that if you want to encourage people to invest in your country, you must first instil their confidence. And the first thing we did was that we had returned the properties to all those affected foreigners.

“We have been returning the properties since 1985 to date. It is important not to exploit the properties of foreigners, we cannot make such a mistake again,” he said.

Uganda’s High Commissioner to Malaysia Dorothy Samali Hyuha said her country held a wealth of investment opportunities in sectors such as agriculture, tourism, mining, construction, and information technology, among others.

Perak Investment, Industrial and Regional Development Committee chairman Datuk Seri Mohammad Nizar Jamaluddin noted that Chinese and Japanese investors were also entering Uganda, which he said Malaysians should take as a vote of confidence in the African nation.

Earlier, the Perak state government and the Ugandan government signed a memorandum of understanding on the Perak-Uganda Trade Gateway.

*Note: A previous edition of the story contained an error which has since been corrected.

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