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Museveni launches mill

By Vision Reporter

Added 26th December 2000 03:00 AM

PRESIDENT Yoweri Museveni on Saturday handed over Uganda Spinning Mill, Lira, to a group of Chinese investors, Guostar enterprises.

PRESIDENT Yoweri Museveni on Saturday handed over Uganda Spinning Mill, Lira, to a group of Chinese investors, Guostar enterprises.

PRESIDENT Yoweri Museveni on Saturday handed over Uganda Spinning Mill, Lira, to a group of Chinese investors, Guostar enterprises. The Chinese are to rehabilitate the mill at a cost of US$24m. Museveni said Uganda will soon benefit from the revival of the mill which is to begin production next July. He said the revival of USML will "enable Uganda to benefit directly by playing a vital role of linking Asia and Africa to the highly restricted but very lucrative $95b textile market in the United States." The Chinese ambassador, Zhang Xujiang, who described Uganda as "an enormously endowed nation with a clear-headed leadership," said, "It is a deliberate policy of China to work and develop the friendly cooperation between our two countries and peoples." Museveni said the factory, which occupies 14.5 hectares, can employ more than 200,000 people in cotton, yarn and textile production and improve the household earnings of the northern region. Production stopped in 1985 with the collapse of the cotton industry in northern Uganda and the former Soviet Union who had built it in 1974. It is capable of producing at least 1,500 metric tonnes of quality yarn and 5,000 metric tonnes of lint cotton. Yarn is thread to make textiles while lint cotton is the raw cotton that has been cleaned by removing the seeds. Museveni said experience had shown businesses are managed better by private enterprises. Privatisation minister Manzi Tumubweine said since 1993, the Privatisation Unit had been trying to divest the mill in vain. "When we were about to succeed and we had a potential bidder, we were dragged to court in a case that had been outstanding for several years. Government lost the case and the spinning mill was sold under court order," he said. Lira RDC Joseph Arwata asked the President to probe reports that out of sh1.4b meant for terminal benefits for workers, about sh355m went to meet legal fees. Ends

Museveni launches mill

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