Sharjah Chamber of Commerce and Industry (SCCI), represented by the Sharjah Export Development Center (SEDC), concluded its business mission to Uganda and Kenya, heading a delegation that included private sector representatives and a host of prominent manufacturers in Sharjah and the UAE.
The six-day mission helped explore new areas of commercial and industrial cooperation with Kenya and Uganda in energy solutions, technology, food security, iron and steel, and agriculture as well as new opportunities for available investments, in addition to introducing the abundant economic advantages of Sharjah, promoting the facilities granted by the emirate to foreign investors, the ‘Made in UAE’ tag, and providing the local business community with the chance to discover new and promising markets, as well as promoting the emirate's exports.
The first leg of the trade tour in the Kenyan capital, Nairobi, witnessed a Sharjah-Kenya business meeting, during which HE Abdallah Sultan Al Owais underlined the fact that the business tour led by the SCCI is in line with the UAE strategy to expand the international trade partners’ network and open up more to all friendly countries. He pointed out that the Republic of Kenya is the UAE's sixth trading partner in non-Arab Africa, with non-oil trade in 2021 around $2.2 billion (AED8.2 billion), which translates into a growth of 20% compared to 2020. Al-Owais pointed out bilateral agreements and the upcoming comprehensive economic partnership agreement, which is the first of its kind between a GCC country and an African nation.
HE Richard Ngatia, President of Kenya National Chamber of Commerce, and Industry (KNCCI) called on Kenyan business owners and investors to build partnerships with the local business community to take the bilateral relations to broader horizons.
The trade tour's second stop was in the Ugandan capital, Kampala, and witnessed a business meeting between Sharjah and Uganda, which highlighted the investment opportunities on both sides and introduced the exceptional advantages available in Sharjah in tourism, free zones, airports, with advanced and qualified logistics, not to mention the emirate's legislation and incentives that contribute to the flow of investments to the region’s markets.
Al Owais pointed out at the meeting that the UAE is a major trading partner for Uganda and an important hub for Ugandan exports to the Americas, Europe, Asia, China and Japan, while Uganda plays the role of a major gateway for the UAE exports to Africa's Great Lakes region, noting that the volume of trade exchange between the two countries increased from $1.8 billion to $3.8 billion in 2021.
Her Excellency Jessica Alupo, Ugandan Vice President, said that the mission is a key station for (the UAE) businessmen in various economic sectors to learn more about investment opportunities in Uganda and establish fruitful investment partnerships with their Ugandan counterparts, noting that her government is keen to facilitate investments for UAE-based investors and overcome all the challenges.