Uganda Free Zones Authority (UFZA) is a public Agency that was established by an Act of Parliament in April 2014 and mandated to oversee the establishment, development, management, marketing, maintenance, supervision and control of Free Zones in Uganda and to provide for any other related matters.
According to the Free Zones Act 2014, a Free Zone is a designated area where goods introduced into the designated area are generally regarded, so far as import duties are concerned, as being outside the Customs control. They are geographic areas where raw materials and goods may be landed, handled, manufactured or reconfigured for export without being subject to import duties.
The overall objective for adoption of Free Zones schemes in the country is to create an enabling environment aimed at enhancing economic growth and development of export oriented manufacturing in priority sectors of the economy. The Authority provides all the necessary support in the promotion and facilitation of export oriented investments.
UFZA ensures that the areas to be considered as Free Zones are gazetted and developed. It regulates the framework of how Free Zones operate and addresses infrastructural and institutional constraints to enable efficient export-led production.
Policy, Licensing and Regulations
- Draft and implement policies and actions relating to Free Zones;
- Advise on policy matters that relate to the Free Zones;
- Assume regulatory functions;
- Issue Free Zone Developer licenses; and
- Enforce compliance with requirements for preventing the unauthorised use of Free Zones and business enterprises in the Free Zones.
Investment Promotion and Advocacy
- Promote and facilitate export oriented enterprises;
- Mobilise resources for developing Free Zones;
- Formulate marketing strategies; and
- Generate public awareness about Free Zones in Uganda.
Operations, Investor Support and Infrastructure Development
- Identify and map areas to be declared as Free Zones;
- Provide, construct, develop, alter, adapt, maintain and administer Free Zones;
- Design and propose to Government schemes and incentives and how the schemes and incentives should be administered; and
- Approve the development and site plans in Free Zones in accordance with the Physical Planning Act, 2010.