PRESS RELEASE Ugandan Diaspora events start in Kampala

By David Muwanga

Uganda Investment Authority (UIA) together with the Ugandan Diaspora Network, of which Dr. Maggie Kigozi is Patron, with pleasure announces the upcoming 9th Annual Ugandan Diaspora Business Breakfast scheduled for 27th December 2019 followed by what has become a signature Ugandan Diaspora Social Networking Gala on 28th December 2019. Both events will take place at the Kampala Serena Hotel.

While addressing the media today in Kampala, UIA Acting Director General Lawrence Byensi said that the Authority annually organizes The Diaspora Home is Best Summit as one of the major efforts to inform the Ugandan Diaspora about the status of investment in the country and investment opportunities so that they can invest back home. 

According to the World Bank 2018 Report on migration and remittances, Ugandans from the Diaspora globally remitted US$ 1.4 billion in 2017 with a decline to US$ 1.3 billion in 2018. The amounts translate to about 5% of Uganda’s GDP of US$ 27.9 billion as announced in last financial year’s Budget Speech. This goes to how important Diaspora remittances are and UIA’s aim is to assist in channeling these into investment that should provide the remitters with high returns for their savings or money sent home. It is important to note that most of the money sent by Ugandans in the Diaspora goes directly into the households, thereby improving the population’s welfare and providing for cheaper funds to invest in productive activity.

Over years since 2004 we have witnessed Diaspora investment in varied sectors including agro processing, real estate development, renewable energy, commercial agriculture and services like education and health. It has been a joint effort with a number of stakeholders to promote and facilitate investment and UIA is grateful for the partnerships that have yielded positive results. Together with the Ministry of Foreign Affairs, UNDP, Ministry of Internal Affairs, Bank of Uganda, Uganda Revenue Authority and many other stakeholders, UIA has participated in the development of the National Diaspora Policy, development of the Diaspora Bond and the Compendium on Business and Investment Opportunities which was published and disseminated. The compendium is due for review considering the many other investment opportunities that have come up in new sectors like the oil and gas, Fintech and other innovative opportunities.

The Diaspora events this year will be an opportunity to discuss the status of a number of Government initiatives to make the investment and social environment more enabling for Ugandans in Diaspora to do business back home. UIA would like to invite the Ugandan business community resident in Uganda to come to the two events and establish strategic networks with our brothers and sisters living in the Diaspora where there are cheaper investment funds and availability of new technologies that can enhance our businesses.

UIA has a dedicated Investment Desk for the Diaspora and we invite all interested in Diaspora investment activities to use it.

UIA appreciates our Partners, the Ugandan Diaspora Network, NBS TV that streams and shows the events live and all who are contributing to the events in one way or another. Without them this initiative would not be as successful.  The Business Breakfast gives UIA the opportunity to dialogue directly with the Diaspora audiences in Uganda and abroad.