KAMPALA Uganda (Xinhua) --
The Ugandan Parliament on Wednesday protested the
proposed relocation of the UN regional service center from the
east African country.
A report by the UN
Secretary General on May 1 recommended to the General Assembly
that the center be moved to neighboring Kenya.
argued that it would be unfair to Uganda since the country has
contributed to various peace missions around Africa and also
hosts thousands of refugees from neighboring countries.
Odonga Otto, argued
that President Yoweri Museveni should engage his Kenyan
counterpart Uhuru Kenyatta to withdraw Kenya’s request to host
resolved that the foreign affairs ministry intensifies
diplomatic engagements with other countries to ensure that the
service center stays in the country.
Ruhakana Rugunda told the legislators that Museveni has already
written to the UN urging it not to move the base.
He said a final
decision will be made by the General Assembly in about two
The base was
established at Entebbe International Airport, 40 km south of the
capital Kampala after Uganda and the UN signed a memorandum of
understanding in July 2010, according to Uganda’s foreign
The ministry said
the base is used to provide services to UN field missions in
Africa. It currently provides administrative, logistics and
information and communications technology services to 13
missions in Africa, representing over 73 percent of all United
Nations peacekeeping and special political missions worldwide.
Uganda partners with Ernst &
Young to boost investment in free zone parks
KAMPALA Uganda (Xinhua) --
Uganda Free Zone Authority (UFZA), a state-run
agency on Tuesday signed a memorandum of understanding (MOU)
with multinational audit firm Ernst & Young to boost investment
in the country’s free zone parks.
Richard Jabo, the
UFZA executive director, said the two institutions will share
information and jointly participate in capacity building
seminars to update and skill their workers on new tax
“Since most of our
work deals with sensitive tax matters, we need to have very
skilled personnel and the partnership will help to sharpen and
also create a pool of needed skilled labor,” Jabo said.
A Free Zone is a
designated area where goods are regarded as being outside the
customs territory, as far as import duty is concerned.
It usually takes the
form of manufacturing or processing facilities, science and
technology parks or a tourism development zone.
Jabo said under the
agreement, Ernst & Young will advise their clients to consider
investing in the country’s free zone parks.
He said government’s
objective is to attract 1 billion U.S. dollar worth of
investments from the private sector by 2020, and build two
public free zone parks to boost value addition, innovation and
manufacture from within the parks will be exempted from import
duties for raw materials, and enjoy economies of scale accruing
from planed production zones,” he said.
about 12 private developers have been licensed and are operating
free zone parks across the country, dealing mainly in
an Ernst & Young tax partner said the agreement will give the
two institutions a platform to share ideas and insights that can
help develop the economy.
“When you look at
our economy, the growth prospects are limited, so as we are
advising our clients, we shall also be telling them to consider
investing here,” Ssempijja said.
He said if
optimized, the free zones will help government in promoting
export of goods and services, promote investment from local and
foreign sources, and also accelerate export led
“The parks are meant
to attract more investors in the industrial sector, boost
production especially for the export market, and also create
more jobs needed for our economy, and this MOU will help to
speed that up,” he said.
Ssempijja noted that
Uganda’s export of goods and services have stagnated for the
last two fiscal years, as the country appears to have reached
the limits of supply capacity in the main export industries.
“Our economy is
heavily dependent on imports and import demand has continued to
expand, widening the balance of payments. Therefore, if we are
to achieve sustainable growth and development and structural
transformation in Uganda, we must strengthen our external
performance,” he said.
bank figures show that the trade deficit in goods and services
has almost tripled to nearly 3 billion dollars in 2015/16 from 1
billion dollars in 2005/06.
Leopard mauls ranger’s child in
Ugandan national park
KAMPALA Uganda (Xinhua) --
A leopard in Uganda’s Queen Elizabeth National Park has mauled a
child, a wildlife official said on Monday.
spokesperson of the Uganda Wildlife Authority, a state agency,
told Xinhua by telephone that the fatal incident occurred on
The child whose
father is a Game Ranger had been left under the care of a house
help by the time the incident happened.
Hangi said the park
authorities are now looking for the leopard to put it into
isolation since it has become dangerous to human life.
“If it proves more
dangerous, we shall have no option but to put in out of action,”
He said this was an
isolated incident and therefore tourists should not be scared
from visiting the park, located in the western part of the
The incident comes
weeks after a community neighboring the park killed 11 lions in
revenge of the carnivores eating their cattle.