Ecobank Uganda recently held a Chinese forum at Arirang hotel with the aim of wooing Chinese investors to bank with them.
In his speech, Clement Dodoo (in featured photo), the Ecobank Uganda Managing Director, said considering the fact that China is seeking to partner with Africa in agriculture, education and industrialization, the Pan-African bank can’t take it for granted.
“As you are aware, in 2016 alone China was Africa’s largest trading partner with volumes exceeding $279bn,” Dodoo said.
He added: “As Ecobank, this partnership could not have been more opportune. The focus of the bank is to contribute towards the integration and economic development of Africa.”
He revealed that now is the time for Chinese investors to do business in Africa and Ecobank is their best placed banking to partner.
“Not only do we have an unrivaled foot print across Africa but we have also superior products and services. We have a strong focus on Ecobank digital which covers the Ecobank Mobile app and Retail Internet banking for individuals whereas businesses use the Ecobank Omni banking platform,” he said.
“Our mandate still remains on providing excellent customer care and relevant products and services to enable you to grow as we grow.
We have a team of capable and dedicated relationship managers who tailor banking to fit your unique needs,” he added.
The Uganda Investment Authority Acting Executive Director, Basil Ajer, who was the Guest of Honor, thanked Ecobank management for the forum.
“The foreign investment opportunities in Uganda still remain at large and is hardly explored. We still have infrastructural gaps which we want to fill with a focus of 30 percent local content,” Ajer said in a statement.
He added: “As you are aware, Ugandan policies, laws, and regulations are generally favorable towards foreign investors. The Ugandan law allows for 100 percent foreign-owned businesses and foreign businesses are allowed to partner with Ugandans without restrictions. The GOU offers incentives for industrial investments including: a 75 percent import duty reduction on factory equipment, depreciating start-up costs over four years, and a 100 percent tax deduction on research and training costs as well as mineral exploration costs.”
He added that UIA facilitates granting of licenses to foreign investors.
The Authority also performs a range of functions including promoting, facilitating, and supervising investments in Uganda.
“I wish to encourage you not to be deterred by what you read in the media. Uganda still remains as one of the highly ranked investment in Africa. As Uganda Investment Authority, we pledge that we shall do whatever it takes to ensure that the investment environment remains conducive and favorable for you to carry out business in the country,” he added.
It is worth noting that
China’s President Xi Jinping has offered $60bn in financial support to African countries and written off debt for the continent’s poorer nations. President Xi also said the figure included $15bn in grants, interest-free loans and concessional loans, a credit line of $20bn, $10bn for development financing and $5bn to buy imports from the continent.
Government debt from China’s interest-free loans due by the end of 2018 will be written off for indebted poor African countries, as well as for developing nations in the continent’s interior and small island nations, a category in which Uganda belongs
China will also carry out 50 projects on green development and environmental protection in Africa, focusing on fighting climate change, desertification and wildlife protection.