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Ugandan Entrepreneurs Advised to Prioritize Quality Production

Kampala Struggles to Maintain Green Spaces
Kampala Struggles to Maintain Green Spaces
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Officials from Operation Wealth Creation (OWC) and Makerere University have encouraged entrepreneurs to focus on producing high-quality products to attract domestic and international markets. During a certificate award ceremony for 30 participants, Edward Katende from OWC emphasized the importance of prioritizing quality output. He stated that this approach would not only attract more customers in Uganda and abroad but also make them eligible for government support through the Parish Development Modal (PDM) program. Katende highlighted the need to select sustainable and lucrative products, tailored to current demand, and packaged to meet standards.

The participants, including car wash operators, furniture makers, market vendors, special hire drivers, and students, received training in various entrepreneurial skills as part of their preparation to benefit from PDM. Edward Katende pledged to connect entrepreneurs to funding sources in Uganda, emphasizing the importance of capital to enhance their businesses. Makerere University, through its entrepreneurship program, played a crucial role in providing training to equip these entrepreneurs with valuable skills.

Many entrepreneurs in Uganda, particularly small businesses, face challenges in accessing funding, such as the Small Business Recovery Funds (SBRF) initiated by the Bank of Uganda to support local businesses impacted by COVID-19. Commercial banks have been criticized for imposing stringent measures, including high interest rates, making it difficult for these businesses to access the funds. This issue has been raised during a stakeholders’ engagement meeting hosted by the head of the State House Investor Protection Unit, Col. Edith Nakalema.

Richard Byarugaba, the executive director in charge of finance at the Bank of Uganda, acknowledged the low uptake of SBRF, with only a small fraction of the allocated funds being utilized. He confirmed that out of the Shs200 billion made available in 2021, only Shs8 billion was consumed.

Eria Hisali, the Principal of Makerere University College of Business and Management Sciences, assured that the university would continue to offer training to individuals, helping them acquire the skills needed to transform their businesses. He expressed the university’s commitment to finding solutions to challenges faced by the community.

The government aims to transition 39 percent of Ugandan subsistence farmers into commercial farmers through the Parish Development Modal (PDM) program.