The long awaited Uganda-DR Congo business Summit has on Monday kick-started in Kinshasa with over 200 companies and business people from both countries participating.

The Summit is taking place in Kinshasa from today May 30 to June 3 and Goma from June 5 to June 8 under the theme, “Boosting Trade and Investment between Uganda and the DRC.”

This first of its kind event organised by Private Sector Foundation Uganda (PSFU) is expected to open up new business Frontiers and opportunities for Ugandan traders and as well consolidate trade relations between Uganda and DR Congo through discussions of business linkages, trade fairs and engagements between governments and businesses.

Uganda’s business delegation led by First Deputy Prime Minister and Minister for East African Affairs, Rt Hon Rebecca Kadaga which arrived in Kinshasa on Sunday also includ Steven Asiimwe CEO PSFU, Odrek Rwabwogo Chairperson Presidential Advisory Committee on Export and Industrial promotion and PSFU board member Sarah Kagingo.

According to the program, Rt Hon Kadaga, Steven Asiimwe and Odrek Rwabwogo are the main speakers of the first day.

Representing President Felix Tshisekedi, the Minister for External Trade, Lucien Bussa, who officially opened the Summit said the vision of President Tshisekedi is to create billionaires in Africa.

Asiimwe from PSFU says Uganda has for a long time yearned for bilateral and serious business engagements with DRC describing the coming of DRC in the community as an opportunity.

“We shall be meeting DRC private sector investors and all government officials responsible for facilitating business, trade and investment between Uganda and DRC,” he said.

DR Congo is the newest partner state of the East Africa African Community. The country remains one of Uganda’s biggest trading partners. In 2021 alone, Uganda’s exports increased from $188-388$ million despite the COVID-19 disruptions.

Last week, Uganda Investment Authority, said Uganda seeks to geometrically increase products the country has been exporting to DRC which include cement, palm oil, rice, wheat flour, raw iron bars, iron nails, plastic pipes, backed goods, alcohol which is 80% ABV, processed tomatoes, aluminum hardware and shoes.

Others are clothes, beef, fish beans, maize flour, sandles, cassava, bags, cattle, maize grains, bedsheets, fruits, eggs, sorghum, mattresses, soda, bananas, bread, motorcycle parts, polythene bags, textiles, suit cases among others.

With a population of about 90 million, DRC offers Uganda’s manufacturers a larger market for their products.

Analysts says that its rich appetite for agricultural produce will enable local manufacturers expand their volume of exports.

With a surface area equivalent to that of western Europe, the DRC is the largest country in sub-Saharan Africa, only is dwarfed by Algeria in the continent. It offers huge untapped opportunity for access to one of the world’s last economic frontier markets.

At a press conference last week, the State Minister for Investment, Evelyn Anite revealed that government of Uganda mainly is mainly focusing on manufacturing, agriculture, agro-processing and services sectors for the DR Congo market.

The new EAC now offers a combined market of approximately 300 million people with GDP of USD 243. DRC alone has a huge market with a potential of 90 million people who have now joined the fraternity of EAC.

Kungu Al-Mahadi Adam is an experienced Ugandan multimedia Journalist with a background of fact checking and thorough research. He is very passionate about current African affairs particularly Horn of Africa. He...

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