Shortly before large conferences were no longer possible due to lock down measures to prevent the spread of COVID-19, the Uganda Green Enterprise Finance Accelerator was successfully launched at the Uganda Europe Business Forum held at Speke Resort Munyonyo, in Kampala on March 9-10 2020.
The Uganda Europe Business Forum was organized by the European Union in partnership with the Private Sector Foundation Uganda and the Government of Uganda.
Over the last year, the EU Delegation to Uganda partnered with Private Sector Foundation Uganda to work together with the private sector, from both Uganda and Europe, in order to assess the main constraints hampering new, sustainable investments in Uganda and propose measures and remedies that can improve the investment and business climate. In his opening speech, the Ambassador of the European Union to Uganda, Attilio Pacifici stated that domestic and European companies have so far identified three main areas of work, which were the key topics of the Uganda Europe Business Forum:
- Skills and attitude: Insufficient supply of skilled labour with appropriate competencies, work ethics and attitude constitutes a major challenge for private companies in Uganda
- Access to finance: The high cost of capital in Uganda, along with lengthy and complex procedures when applying for a loan in commercial banks, makes the access to finance challenging for the private sector
- Economic governance and corruption: Despite several anti-corruption initiatives launched by Government, according to various reports, corruption remains common in Uganda. It is a major obstacle for better investment climate and sustainable private sector growth.
Please find all opening speeches here.
As a panellist, Edirisa Sembatya representing adelphi elaborated UGEFA functionalities during the “Financing for Green SMEs session”. The session was facilitated by Adolfo Cires Alonso from the European Union Delegation to Uganda. adelphi research is a non-profit leading independent think tank and public policy consultancy on climate, environment and development based in Germany. adelphi is the hosting organization for UGEFA in partnership with SEED, with the support of the European Union.
The session was streamed live, and a recording of the launch of the Uganda Green Finance Accelerator is available here (the UGEFA presentation starts at minute 48:14 of the video).
The official ceremony was presided over by the President of the Republic of Uganda, His Excellency Yoweri Kaguta Museveni. At the Forum, Uganda signed a financing agreement with the European Union which will fund the Inclusive Green Economy Uptake Programme. This programme aims at developing innovative products and projects that reduce environmental risks. The Uganda Green Enterprise Finance Accelerator is part of the Inclusive Green Economy Uptake Programme, funded by the European Union.