TRADE AND COMMERCE
DEPARTMENT OF TRADE, INDUSTRY AND LOCAL ECONOMIC DEVELOPMENT
Cooperative societies in the Local Government
Bugiri District Local Government has approximately one hundred (100) cooperative societies (44 Savings and Credit and 46 Multipurpose Cooperative societies) spread across the different sub counties of the local government at varying levels of performance. This number is likely to go up with the registration of the 57-constituency based SACCOs under the Presidential Initiative for Job and Wealth Creation (EMYOOGA). It’s the duty of the Trade department to mobilize for their registration, regulate, supervise and mentor them to ensure that all cooperative societies become viable business entities. As a regulator and major stakeholder interested in the performance of cooperative societies, having a closer working relationship with the cooperative societies is crucial for their improved performance. The district has three (3) secondary level cooperative societies including; Busoga growers cooperative union, Namubuka and Nankoma area cooperative enterprises.
Bugiri District has approximately three thousand (3,000) business entities involved in different lines of businesses with Municipality inclusive. Traders in the local government come in different forms and magnitude. General merchandize has the highest number of traders followed by drug shops, restaurants, agro processors/produce dealers etc. These traders play a very critical role in the manufacture, supply and distribution of goods and services produced in the district. The traders also offer market for the goods and services produced in the local government.
Industrialists/Agro processing facilities
Bugiri District is predominantly agro based and this has partly shaped the nature of its industries. The district has two (2) industries -agro processing industries including; Kibimba Limited and Bugiri Sugar Company Limited. The district also has a sizable number of small value addition equipment offering agro processing services to the public.
The department of Trade, Industry and Local Economic Development continues to work closely with the development partners to bridge the existing funding gaps in the department. Development partners that have often brought additional resources to complement the existing resources include; USAID Feed the future Producer organizations Activity, FAO, UCA, Heifer international, World Vision, UCOBAC, EADEN, USADAF, ISDB, MUCOBADI, Youth Alive, SWISS Contact, PROFIRA, Recolto and UN-Women. With the support of these development partners, the department has been able to strengthen the capacity of the Trade department through provision of logistical support including, vehicle, computers, T.V Dash board, photo copier and desk top and market information system. The development partners have further strengthened the capacity of cooperative societies and MSMEs by supporting dissemination of market information that has led to agribusiness growth and development through enhanced market linkages.
Emphasis will also be put on working closely with government departments and agencies especially those supporting trade promotion including; Uganda Commodity exchange Limited, Management Training and advisory centre, Uganda National Bureau of standards, Uganda Industrial Research institute, Uganda Export promotions board and Uganda Development corporation. Working closely with government agencies and departments bring additional resource to the local government.
Bugiri District Local government has three (3) banks, one (1) micro finance institution, eleven (11) officially recognized and licenced money lenders, 46 SACCO and several Village savings and loan associations that offer financial services to the business community.
Medium, Small and Micro Enterprises (MSMEs)
With the exception of Kibimba Limited, Bugiri Sugar Company Limited and New Forest Company, most of the businesses in the local government remain micro because of their low capital and the few staff employed per entity. That notwithstanding, these entities have the potential to grow and create jobs in the local government. The department is working closely with these entities to ensure that they become more competitive and have access to the finances needed to do business. The district has approximately 3,000 MSMEs with the Municipality inclusive.
Tourism and hospitality industry
Bugiri district Local government has forty-seven (47) potential tourist sites and 48 hotels/guest houses with 627 rooms. The department will continue working with the different stakeholders in the hospitality industry to promote both local and international tourism. Emphasis is to be put on ensuring that both the tourist sites and hotels/guest houses offer a good experience for our tourists through supply of quality services.
Department of Trade, Industry and Local Economic Development
The Department of Trade, Industry and Local Economic Development is clustered in three (3) sectors including; cooperative development services sector, Medium, Small, Micro Enterprises (MSME) sector and Tourism and wildlife conservation sector.
Trade investment opportunities
Agriculture/agribusiness: Bugiri holds comparative advantage in rice production with Kibimba brand being the most notable brand.
Agro processing: over 80% of the population are farmers, there is over whelming need for value addition in a bid to maximize profits.
Fishing: The district is surrounded by water bodies with a high catchment of fish, there is need to invest in ice plant to support fish preservation, fishing nets and modern fishing boats.
The department has high presence of minerals including; gold, rare earth metals, iron ore, sand and clay. There is need to invest in mineral exploration and mining.
Market: The district is in close proximity with Busia-Kenya and Malaba-Kenya borders, there is need to invest in a border market.
Apiary has potential given the high presence of bee keepers in the district.
The district has a high young population with the potential to offer market for education institutions
Challenges faced by the department
• The department has no development grant to support development of term trade infrastructure
• Most department activities remain unfunded priorities
• The department lacks office space