By Samuel Sanya
THE Republic of Korea has signed three grants worth a combined $14.9m (sh38.7b) for a technical college in Kampala, a fruit factory in Soroti and a farmer’s school in Kampiringisa, Mpigi district.
Kim Young-Mok, the president of the Korea International Cooperation Agency (KOICA), noted that additional support has been earmarked in the sectors of ICT, energy, democracy, education and gender equality.
“Uganda has had impressive economic growth over the last five years and is one of the most efficient countries in using donor support to create tangible outcomes,” he said at the Ministry of Finance headquarters.
“We want Uganda’s economy to take off at a faster pace. We would like to expand our support to other areas,” he added.
Young-Mok also noted that Uganda has done impressively in the accomplishment of the Millennium Development Goals (MDGs) in addition to being a democratic country.
The grants were promised in the year 2010, an additional project for the establishment of an agro-processing and marketing strategy in Uganda was also signed between Korea and Uganda.
Maria Kiwanuka, the finance minister, noted that the grants will augment government’s efforts to promote vocational education and mitigate the growing youth unemployment problem.
“I am confident Uganda will continue to benefit from your different programmes that have augmented government’s efforts,” she said.
“The proposed cooperation in the energy sector and the expansion of the National Farmers Leadership Project to create model villages and support for the Civil Aviation Authority are a good start,” she said.
The grants are complimentary to the $26.8m (sh69.6b) Education IV project being implemented to support five business, technical and vocational institutes to be rehabilitated and fully equipped.