The Czech Republic has officially opened a consulate in Uganda, which is hoped among others to promote trade, investment, political, social and cultural relations.
Financier Stephen Mpuuga Kaboyo, the Consul to Kampala, presented his credentials to the State Minister of Foreign Affairs Okello Oryem at the Foreign Affairs Ministry in Kampala on Friday.
The Czech Republic’s Head of Mission in Nairobi, Ambassador Martin Klepetko who attended the event expressed his country’s readiness to develop business and diplomatic ties with Uganda.
“We would like to develop our business, diplomatic ties and many other areas of cooperation. We are indeed ready to jump in whenever there are opportunities. We will bring in our companies and experts to develop the cooperation between two countries,” said Ambassador Klepetko.
Speaking about his appointment, Mr Kaboyo said his primary responsibility is to promote trade and investment between Czech Republic and Uganda.
“There is a lot that Uganda and Czech can do. The Czech Republic is a highly industrialised economy and very diversified. It is a member of the European Union. My focus will be in agribusiness, health and education. For instance, they have the best universities in Europe,” he said.
The key sectors of the Czech economy include automobile, aerospace, high tech engineering rail, IT software, defence systems, agribusiness and tourism.
The Czech economy is a developed export oriented market based on manufacturing, innovation and services. It is also a highly industrialized country with the industry sector accounting for 38% of the economy.
Then Czech Republic’s Gross Domestic Product (GDP) of above 250 billion dollars happens to be among the fastest growing in Europe averaging 4.4% for the last couple of years.
“Clearly there are synergies that we can build between Uganda and Czech. A good example is our commodities. The Czech imports significant quantities of raw materials. This is a ready market for our exports. We do not have to look very far. The potential is there,” Kaboyo said.
“The trade between Uganda and the European Union still remains low. Finding markets for our exports will be one of my priorities. I will also be working hard to attract inward investment,” he added.
Kaboyo further noted that Czech Republic is open for business, saying, “I have had a chance to interact with the Czech private sector. They are keen to open and create closer dialogue with the Uganda’s business community at a levels. I will do this through creation of true economic and business partnerships.”
According to the United Nations Comtrade database on International trade, Uganda’s exports to Czech Republic was 37.2 million dollars in 2018. On the other hand, Uganda’s imports from Czech Republic were worth 2.66 million dollars in the same year.
Uganda’s exports to Czech Republic include; coffee, tea, mate and spices, vegetable fats and oils, cleavage products, dairy products, eggs, honey among others.
About Stephen Kaboyo
Mr Kaboyo is the CEO of Alpha Capital Partners, a Ugandan firm with interests in sovereign asset management, foreign exchange trading strategies and financial sector advisory.
He is the chairman of the Total Uganda Advisory Board, chairman Sino Uganda Special Economic Zone.
He is also the chairman of the Nile Competitiveness Initiative. The Think Tank advises the President about how to accelerate investment, production and productivity in the Ministries of Trade, Agriculture, the financial sector and public service.
He served as an intermittent expert for IMF, participating in International missions providing technical assistance in developing financial systems.