President Museveni Pushes for Value Addition and Highlights Access to Ready Markets

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President Yoweri Museveni highlighted the significance of adding value to agricultural products and accessing ready markets. He stated that Uganda has markets in East Africa, Africa, China, and Eastern Europe. Unlike Western countries that purchase raw materials at low prices, these new markets prefer to buy finished goods. President Museveni encouraged Ugandans to engage in commercial agriculture, utilize government initiatives like Emyooga and the Parish Development Model (PDM), and pursue technical education.

President Yoweri Kaguta Museveni assured Ugandans the nation has a ready market for their value-added goods.’

‘’If you engage in agriculture and then add value to your products in a processing facility, a third step—the market—is required. You’ll lose money if they don’t purchase your goods. Fortunately, as a nation, we have access to the markets of East Africa and all of Africa. Another plus is that we have ready markets in China and Eastern Europe,’’ according to President Museveni.

President Yoweri Museveni mentioned this in his virtual message to Ugandans, on Tuesday, June 27, 2023.

In contrast to the Western countries, who take advantage of Africans by purchasing their raw materials at bargain costs, he said that the new markets of Eastern Europe and China are distinctive because they prefer to purchase already finished items.

“Instead of buying raw materials like how some Western countries have been doing, these people from Eastern Europe are willing to buy our finished goods. For instance, when it comes to our coffee, we sell it unprocessed at 2 US dollars per kilogram and the wise people process and add value to it and in turn, they sell it at 40 US dollars per kilogram,” President Museveni stated.

I don’t want you to blow this opportunity. Those of you who grow coffee also contribute to its value and receive a portion of the 40 US dollars. If the person in charge of this factory receives, say, $30 USD, he might decide to raise the price of raw coffee from the farm; rather than paying the farmer $2 USD, he might decide to pay me $5 USD, he continued.

On the other hand, in order to increase the household earnings of Ugandans, President Museveni advised Ugandans to engage in commercial agriculture using “ekibaalo” (calculation) and to support government initiatives like Emyooga and the Parish Development Model (PDM).

‘’At this point, youth who don’t want to work in agriculture should pursue technical and vocational education. The PDM money has been distributed to the houses; now, the young people who don’t wish to prostitute themselves should learn a trade. Additionally, they will receive operating cash from Emyooga to advance their businesses,’’ he suggested.

“The wealthy should turn to Uganda Development Bank (UDB) for low interest loans that they can use to advance their large-scale agricultural endeavors or want to start factories, rather than PDM or Emyooga,” the President emphasized.

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