John Mulimba, the Minister of State for Foreign Affairs, has called on the heads of Uganda’s missions to actively engage with MDAs and host countries for accreditations to enhance Uganda’s economic profile.

This appeal follows the Ministry of Finance’s allocation of nearly UGX 2 billion to 12 selected missions in Uganda’s neighboring states for the 2024/25 financial year.

“This funding should be utilized effectively as it will serve as a benchmark for other Ugandan missions and pave the way for increased funding for Economic Commercial Diplomacy, thereby aiding our progress toward middle-income status,” Mulimba stated.

Mulimba’s remarks came during the official opening of the Joint Regional Economic & Commercial Diplomacy Retreat in Kigo on Tuesday.

Under the theme “Enhanced Economic Growth and Development Through Promotion of Economic and Commercial Diplomacy,” the retreat aims to boost Uganda’s exports to regional countries through increased foreign direct investment and align Uganda’s missions abroad with the Ministry’s focus on economic and commercial diplomacy.

Mulimba also urged mission heads to continually research and publish data from various national and international entities to ensure accurate trade and FDI statistics, emphasizing the importance of reliable data.

“This should be integrated into your ongoing promotion of economic and commercial diplomacy,” he added.

Vincent Waiswa Bagiire, Permanent Secretary of the Ministry of Internal Affairs, highlighted the retreat’s goal of ensuring ambassadors identify markets for Uganda’s surplus products, thus contributing to economic growth.

Bagiire mentioned that the retreat aims to refine strategies for increasing Uganda’s regional exports, with the Finance Ministry expected to provide financial support for these initiatives.

Ramathan Ggoobi, Permanent Secretary of the Ministry of Finance Planning and Economic Development and Secretary to the Treasury, pledged support for missions abroad in marketing Uganda for tourism, securing export markets, and attracting high-quality investors.

Ggoobi noted that the tourism industry is a significant revenue earner for Uganda, and collaboration between missions, the Uganda Tourism Board, Uganda Investment Authority, and the Export Promotions Board will boost tourism.

“As Secretary to the Treasury, I commit to supporting missions abroad and providing guidelines on how they can focus on these areas in addition to the traditional agenda,” Ggoobi emphasized.

After the four-day retreat, ambassadors from neighboring states including Burundi, Rwanda, DRC, South Sudan, Kenya, Tanzania, and Somalia, are expected to develop guidelines for conducting Joint Permanent Commissions, addressing tariff and non-tariff barriers, and realigning Uganda’s missions abroad with the Ministry’s economic and commercial diplomacy goals.

Kimera Abdul is a Senior Journalist with Plus News Uganda. He identifies as an adaptable and enthusiastic individual who works to inspire generations. He posses a Diploma and Broadcast journalism and has...

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