President Yoweri Kaguta Museveni has invited Algeria to join Uganda in setting up a joint venture with an aim of adding value to the East African country’s coffee.
The President made the call yesterday August 8, 2023 during a meeting with a delegation from Algeria at the sidelines of the ongoing G-25 Africa Coffee Summit at Speke Resort Munyonyo.
Hr told the delegation led by the country’s Minister of Commerce and Export Promotion, Hon. Tayeb Zitouni, that Africa, Uganda inclusive has supported Europe economically, but the Western countries have not reciprocated the favour.
“You know when I buy from you something, I’m supporting your prosperity and we have been using our pockets for the last 200 years to support Europeans by buying their vehicles, buying their aeroplanes and medicines. When we say that okay you support us also by adding value to our coffee and you pay us more, they don’t understand it,” the President said.
“Therefore, what I propose are joint ventures. The country will get more money from coffee through the joint venture than what we are getting now for raw coffee. For raw coffee, we may be getting USD2.5 per kilogram, when we add value together, we may get USD25. Even if Uganda was to get USD25 together with our joint venture and then the external operations take USD10 or 15, it will be a win-win situation and then create more jobs. That is why we want our Northern African friends and those from the Middle East to come and cooperate with us in this USD25 share,” he added.
Hon. Tayeb welcomed President Museveni’s proposal, saying that as a country they are willing to join the venture.
“Businesspeople are coming here in September to look through the possible cooperation. We consume coffee worth USD300 million per year. We progressed on importing milk from Uganda and we shall also see what we can do with coffee value addition,” he assured the President.
In the same meeting, the Secretary General of the Inter-African Coffee Organisation (ICAO), Amb Solomon Rutega, conveyed appreciation to President Museveni from coffee producing African countries for being a champion of the promotion of the African coffee sector, especially value-addition.
The Managing Director of Uganda Coffee Development Authority (UCDA), Emmanuel Lyamulemye, informed the President that Ugandan Coffees had won gold at international competitions because of high quality which can create a good market.
Among other dignitaries, the meeting was also attended by Uganda’s Foreign Affairs Minister, Gen Jeje Odongo, the Minister of Agriculture, Frank Tumwebaze, and the Vice Chair of Private Sector Foundation Uganda (PSFU), Ms Sarah Kagingo.