UIA hails Atiak Sugar Factory for creating over 10,000 jobs

By David Muwanga

AMURU, UGANDA: Acting Director General of the Uganda Investment Authority (UIA) Mr. Lawrence Byensi has hailed Atiak Sugar Factory project for creating over 10,000 jobs through the establishment of Out Growers cooperative societies for the people of Northern Uganda.

“This sub region has suffered a lot because of insurgents but now it is recovering and has attracted investors one of which is Atiak Sugar factory which is creating jobs while the sub region will no longer suffer from sugar shortage,” he said.

In implementing one of her mandates of providing Aftercare services to investors, a team from the Uganda Investment Authority (UIA) led by the Acting Director General Mr. Lawrence Byensi, monitored the progress of implementation of three projects in Northern Uganda that included Atiak Sugar Factory Limited in Amuru District.

The team included Ms Sheila Mugyenzi, the UIA Director for Investment Promotion and Development, Director for Small and Medium Enterprises Ms. Winnie Lawoko-olwe, Ms Prossy Kikabi, the Acting Deputy Director Business Development and the UIA Media Relations Officer, Mr. David Muwanga and Mr. Emmanuel Kaye, UIA Environment Officer.

Mr. Byensi explained that that government has developed policies that are need to safeguard the interests of all stakeholders to ensure that the sugar industry in Uganda thrives and focuses on value addition.

“You are now creating jobs through direct employment of 1500 workers and indirect wealth creation through the farmers’ cooperative societies and other service providers,” Mr. Byensi noted.

He added that Uganda with one of the fastest growing populations in the world, a rising GDP and growing disposable income, the consumption of sugar per head and industry is projected to grow, creating new opportunities for both farmers and investors.

“Uganda’s current per capita sugar consumption is about 15kg per annum – with about 350,000 tons of raw sugar consumed annually, therefore demand is forecast to double by 2030,”.

Amina Hershi, the Chief Executive Officer of the company said the project in Gem Village, Atiak Sub-County has the capacity to crush 1,650 tonnes of raw cane daily, producing 66 million kilogrammes of sugar annually, we also plan to increase the capacity want.

“However although factory which was set up in 2016 is ready for production but there has been delays of calibration by the International Organization for Standardization – experts to ensure the quality, safety, and efficiency of products, services, and systems,” she said.

Ms Amina Hershi told the delegation that already 3,000 acres of sugar cane belonging to Gem Pachilo and Atiak Out growers Cooperative Societies are ready for supply to the factory to being its maiden production.

“We have also established a co-generation of six megawatts of electricity off the national grid which is supplied through biogas generated from the bi-products of the cane,”

“I am happy that we are creating jobs for the people of Northern Uganda who experienced wars, they will start earning money through supply of sugar canes and other jobs that have come with the factory,” she added.