On Tuesday, 7th February 2017, the Minister of State for Investment and Privatization, Hon. Evelyn Anite paid a courtesy visit to the Investors’ One Stop Center, at UIA. She inspected the various stalls of the physical One Stop Centre and requested for a demo of the e-biz on-line applications.
Uganda Investment Authority (UIA) is implementing the Cabinet directive to transform itself into a One Stop Centre for investors. The directive established a set of institutions that must form part of the start-up phase of the One Stop Centre. These institutions were Uganda Investment Authority (UIA), Uganda Registration Services Bureau
(URSB), Ministry of Lands Housing and Urban Development (MoLHUD), Uganda Revenue Authority (URA), National Environmental Management Authority (NEMA), Directorate of Citizenship and Immigration Control (DCIC/Ministry of Internal Affairs), and Kampala Capital City Authority (KCCA).
The Uganda National Bureau of Standards (UNBS) has since joined these institutions, and it renders the much desired quality assurance and certification services to investors who have commenced production.
Cabinet further set the roadmap for establishment of an electronic solution to complement the physical presence at the Investors’ One Stop Centre, and this was to set pace for Governments e-Government programme implemented under the guidance of NITA-U. In June 2015 UIA procured the services of a Consultant, Norway Registers Development AS (NRD) to develop a web-based solution (the e-biz platform on www.ebiz.go.ug) that would enable on-line services for the seven Government Agencies named above and any others that may come on board later to
In July 2015 the Consultant, NRD, embarked on the assignment and was able to deliver a Minimum Viable Product (MVP) which was launched by Hon. Prof. Tarsis Kabwegyere, Minister for General Duties/Offi ce of the Prime Minister in January 2016. This was fi rst milestone deliverable of the Consultant which enabled two services on
the e-biz web portal, namely: (i) Business Name Reservation and (ii) Land Title Verification or land title search as it is commonly known.
The e-Biz platform at UIA is the first Government of Uganda inter-agency system-to-system integration, bringing together the functionality of select Government systems that relate to the investment function. Much as it is still work in progress, there has been some commendable achievement, and this progress must be celebrated and sustained.
In December 2016, after committing a lot of funds, time, and effort onto delivering the e-Biz solution, the following modules were launched:
• The Business Registration System (BRS) to be used by URSB; this is operational at the URSB head offi ces and their branches. The handover of the BRS was witnessed by Hon. David Bahati – Min. of State for Planning (MoFPED); This has brought the process time for business name registration/company incorporation within a day;
• The land search feature was re-launched and a new team of expert users was trained, this has since gone live, and clients are using it to verify land titles that are already available on the digital registers at Lands Registry;
• The investment licensing feature at UIA was launched and a new team of expert users trained, this too has since gone live. The result is a much shortened cycle for investment licensing, that is now well under 48 hours.
• Testing of the e-biz integration interface to the e-visa system of DCIC was completed on the test platform, but it has not gone live yet owing to some final work on the live platform; e-visas/permits/passes can however be accessed
directly through the DCIC e-visa system, already available with the immigration agents at the OSC; the renewal of visas, application for special passes and permits now takes about 3 days only, and could improve if the approval committees sit more frequently;
• The Environmental Impact Assessment feature for NEMA was launched and it has since gone live; Applications for EIA assessment that are received electronically, are acknowledged and quickly escalated through the NEMA hierarchy; this has greatly reduced on the processing times for EIAs since the entire process can now be tracked and monitored;
• The KCCA interface for City Operator Identification Number (COIN) was completed and was successful on the test platform, but it has not gone live yet owing to final works on the live platform, involving works on application
of Trading License (TL); when live, both COIN.