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Uganda set to host Gulf investment forum

Uganda will this week host a Gulf Cooperation Council (GCC) investment forum in which Ugandan businessmen will find opportunities to meet international businessmen.

The GCC forum which has been organized by the Government through the Uganda Investment Authority (UIA) with a theme ‘Uganda a country of opportunity and prosperity’ will be held on May 28-29, 2012 at Sheraton Kampala Hotel.

During a press briefing at the Media Centre Aston Kajara, the Minister of State for finance in charge of privatization said the business meet will give opportunity to local investors to discuss business collaboration with potential investors.

He said the local businessmen will have an opportunity to meet and discuss with representatives of key private sector bodies and investment banks from mainly the GCC countries.

Some of the GCC countries are; Bahrain, Kuwait, Oman, Qatar, Saudi Arabia and United Arab Emirates and they possess wealthy businessmen and private sector bodies who can partner with Ugandans to create businesses, projects and incomes.

The GCC businessmen and bodies have expertise in construction, oil, banking and other financial services that Ugandans can take advantage of to start and grow businesses.

The other organizers of the GCC are the Islamic Development Bank Group (IDB), Arab Bank for Economic development in Africa (BADEA), The United Nations Industrial Development Organization (UNIDO) and the Federation of Gulf Cooperation Council (GCC) chambers.

Tom Buringuriza the acting Executive Director of UIA said they had developed about 200 business ideas(projects) which Ugandans can access for free and be able to present them to potential investors for partnership and business collaboration during the forum.

“The local businessmen should this week come to UIA office and access the business ideas for free which they can present to potential investors and business partners” Buringuriza said.

Kajara said the GCC has in the past operated in North Africa and some parts of Europe and that it was a great opportunity to host them in East Africa, particularly in Uganda.

The minister said that Uganda will showcase opportunities it has in agriculture and agribusiness, energy and tourism which would be spurred to grow and promote investment and development.

Buringuriza said over 200 delegates are expected at the forum, of which 75 hail from the GCC countries. “We see this as a great breakthrough to host the GCC here in Kampala,” he added.

He however stressed that partners and potential investors would be interested in finding and working with honest and trustworthy partners and businessmen.

Buringuriza said GCC will not immediately establish a bureau but will work through UIA to follow up on issues and partnerships built during the two days' forum.

By Darious Magara
The New Vision Newspaper

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