Business

New EU Envoy, Kutesa Discuss Private Sector Reinforcement

Attilio Pacifici, the New European Union Ambassador to Uganda presented working copies of his credentials to the Minister of Foreign Affairs, Sam Kutesa, at the Ministry of Foreign Affairs in Kampala, officials from the Ministry said in a statement.

The function was held on Monday September 11.

Pacifici replaces Kristian Schmidt whose tour ended in July 2017.

Kutesa congratulated Pacifici on his new appointment in Uganda.

Amb. Pacifici thanked the Minister for welcoming him stating that he was looking forward to working with the Government of Uganda to strengthen further relations between the European Union and the Republic of Uganda.

The Ambassador-designate said he was glad to be in Uganda again, a country he last visited 25 years ago, reads the statement.

The two discussed various issues including EU strategies for strengthening the Private Sector in Uganda as a catalyst for development.

It should be recalled that early this year EU launched a 46 billion Agro Equity Impact Fund to provide much needed access to capital for small and medium agri-businesses in Uganda.

Dubbed Yield Uganda Investment Fund, it is arranged by Deloitte Uganda and Pearl Capital Partners Uganda (PCP).

An initial €12 million (Ugx 46 billion) was made available, and the Fund was expected to attract additional €13m (Ush 49.8 billion) by the end of 2017 to reach €25 million (Ush 95.8 billion) in total commitments.

The Fund targets agriculture-related businesses across all value chains including supply of agricultural inputs, production and agro-processing within all sub-sectors, post-harvest storage and distribution, but also peripheral activities such as transportation, communications and certification.

It also seeks to support businesses with a clear competitive advantage and ambitious local management.

Speaking at the launch, then EU Ambassador to Uganda, H.E Kristian Schmidt, said: “The launch today marks an important milestone. In creating this investment Fund, the EU has listened and is responding to the needs of Ugandan agribusiness. This is a first of its kind to be funded by the EU where we are blending private equity and grants and we are proud that Uganda is a beneficiary. Yield Uganda Investment Fund is the result of continued efforts and commitment from the European Union to support the agribusiness sector by lowering the cost and risk of investments. This Fund will offer presently lacking long-term capital to entrepreneurs in the agricultural sector and contribute to the modernization and expansion of agribusinesses companies while providing quality financial returns for investors.”

Pacifici has over 25 years career experience as a permanent staff member the European Commission mainly focusing his work on Africa and African Affairs.

He worked as the European Union ambassador to Liberia from November 2009 to December 2014.

Prior to his appointment, he worked as a senior advisor to the Managing Director European External Action Services for Africa.

 

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