Minister of Finance Hon. Matia Kasaija has disclosed that government is now focusing on industrializing Uganda through promoting modern agriculture practices and re-organizing farmers to prioritize commercial farming so as to boost their household income.
According to Kasaija, Uganda is now zoned into agri-ecological zones which will enable government set up specific industries in each region and help farmers get the market for their produce and increase their household incomes.
He was on Tuesday speaking during the Presidential Initiative to promote Agro Industrialization for local economic development in the Rwenzori Region. The workshop was organised by Operation Wealth Creation held at Mountains of the Moon Hotel.
The pilot project in the Rwenzori region will allow local governments make budgets according to their needs in their districts so that the Finance Ministry can directly allocate funds to them for implementation.
Minister of Local Government Tom Butime assured participants that with the initiative, infrastructure development will be realized where roads like Kijura-Kabende-Kyenjojo Kyenjojo-Rwamwanja-Kamwenge road and Budiba Bridge that connects Ntoroko and Congo will be constructed.
Frank Tumwebaze the Minister for ICT highlighted the need for change of the budget structure as proposed in the initiative from bottom to top ministries instead of ministries just allocating meagre funds to districts which sometimes cannot implement developmental projects.
OWC Coordinator Gen. Salim Saleh has since October last year camped in Rwenzori region mobilizing the local government officials and private sector to initiate projects that are viable in their region aimed at adding value to the locally produced agricultural goods.
Two industrial hubs are to be set in Kasese and Kabarole, according to Saleh they would absorb the local produce and also boost employment opportunities.
Projects identified include restocking of crater lakes to promote fish processing, tourism through establish 5star hotels, agro processing factories, dairy farming among others.