PRESIDENT Yoweri Museveni has urged private Indian companies to invest in Africaâ€™s infrastructure. Museveni is attending the first ever Afro-Indian summit in New Delhi.
PRESIDENT Yoweri Museveni has urged private Indian companies to invest in Africaâ€™s infrastructure. The President was yesterday addressing the two-day first ever Africa-India summit. Fourteen African leaders are attending the meeting at Vigyan Bhauan hall in Indiaâ€™s capital of New Dehli.
Museveni, who spoke on behalf of the East African Community, said: â€œWe need Indian investment to make our products cheap and competitive and also to access the high markets Africa has been offered but cannot exploit.â€
According to a statement from State House, Museveni argued that Africa could access markets in the USA, Europe and China tax-and-quota-free but it had not fully exploited it because of the underdeveloped infrastructure.
Investment is needed in developing railway transport and energy, he added.
â€œIndian private companies should invest in producing for those markets,â€ he said.
Museveni attributed Africaâ€™s under-development to the anti-private investor attitudes made by independence leaders.
He, however, noted that the current African leaders have realised the mistake and are encouraging the private sector.
Museveni also blamed the fragmentation of the African market which had been addressed by creating regional blocks. â€œAfrica is very rich at many states and flags, hence the fragmentation of the marketâ€, he said.
Museveni was optimistic that Africaâ€™s take-off was inevitable.
â€œWith this investment and a population of 2 billion people, Africa will take off very soonâ€.
He concurred with remarks made by the Indian Prime Minister Manmahon Singh that the 21st century will be a century for Asia and Africa. He assured the summit that Uganda had the potential to produce food.
â€œWhat we need is investment in food processing because what we are producing now has no markets whereas there is a food shortage on the international markets. We are ready to produce for this expanding middle class in India and China.â€
Ugandaâ€™s delegation included ministers: Sam Kutesa(foreign affairs) Khiddu Makubuya, (justice, constitutional affairs) Prof. Semakula Kiwanuka (Investment) Hope Mwesigye (state for Local government )and Ugandaâ€™s High Commissioner to India Nimisha Madhvani.
Museveni is to meet Indian leaders and private investors. His wife Janet, the MP for Ruhaama, will also meet other Indian leaders to discuss projects for her constituency.
President Museveni woos Indian investors