UIA Boss Blames Govt for Poor Investment Ranking

The executive director of the Uganda Investment Authority (UIA), Dr Frank Ssebowa, has blamed inefficiencies within government agencies for the poor World Bank rankings.

Dr Ssebowa’s remarks come after the recently-released Doing Business report for 2015 ranked Uganda at 150th, 18 places below last year’s position. Describing the ranking as ‘a pity,’ Ssebowa said government agencies needed to get their act together and adopt more efficient ways of facilitating people and organisations to do business.

“Until we amend laws and ensure that government bodies recognise the one-stop centre, we shall continue to rank poorly,” he told journalists at the Uganda Media Centre, Tuesday. “It is only in Uganda where an investor is required to pay for a transformer when they try to connect power to their factories. Government should be doing that.”

Ssebowa added that government agencies were not well coordinated, even when dealing with mundane tasks. He highlighted the case of Kampala Capital City Authority (KCCA), National Environment Management Authority (Nema) and UIA, who all carry out separate environmental impact assessments when vetting investors.

“Why can’t they form a joint team?” he wondered.

Ssebowa announced that the 7th Diaspora Home is the Best summit, will take place in Gulu from December 15 to 19, 2014. The summit is intended to woo Ugandans abroad to invest at home. Ssebowa said the summit, expected to attract up to 400 potential investors, was designed to sell northern Uganda as a viable investment destination.

He, however, emphasized that such summits will not bear fruit unless government bodies make it easier for one to start and sustain a business. Last year, according to government figures, Uganda’s diaspora annual remittances topped $900m (Shs 2.3 trillion).

Source : The Observer

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