Kampala, January 31st 2017  

Uganda Free Zones Authority (UFZA) has issued a Developer’s Licence to M/s Arua SEZ Limited today at the UFZA offices in Kampala. The company has been licensed to develop a Special Economic Zone in Arua Municipality, Arua District, Uganda.

The Chairman Board of Directors of UFZA, Eng Dr Frederick Kiwanuka while handing over the licence congratulated the company for seizing and harnessing the business opportunities that Free Zones present to the business community.

UFZA is mandated to develop, manage, market, maintain, supervise and control Free Zones in Uganda.  Free Zones are designated areas where goods introduced and produced are generally regarded as being outside the Customs territory, in so far as import and export duties are concerned.

The Chairman of M/s Arua SEZ Ltd, Dr. Eric Adriko said that Arua Special Economic Zone will be a key driver for exports and job creation in Uganda. The key export destinations will be Eastern DRC, South Sudan and Central African Republic while raw materials from these countries such as Timber and Minerals will be processed for the International Markets.

Arua SEZ will develop 45,000 square meters of productive ware house space on a site of 12 Hectares including an Export Business Accelerator Park for Local SMEs to get on to the International Value Chains.  The Site will include the development of an office park for dedicated trade facilitation and market linkage services to enhance trade in the region. The development is estimated to cost USD 12.7 million, with additional USD 30.6 million from the Operators or Business enterprises who will undertake in new investments within the Special Economic Zone with an estimated 2,000 direct and indirect jobs created for socio-economic development.

Richard Jabo, Executive Director of UFZA said that the Authority will facilitate the company to get all the necessary clearances from the Government Ministries, Departments & Agencies with whom partnerships have already been established like URA, UNBS, URSB and others to aid in the acquisition of secondary licences, permits and approvals.

The project will be anchored on Ware houses to facilitate the activities of; labeling, packing and repacking, sorting, grading, cleaning and mixing (agro processing) and breaking of bulk. In future expansion, the company has indicated that it will consider Timber processing into finished goods for export. They are also targeting Aquaculture by the local community along the river Nile, and house a purpose built Fish processing Unit, to provide demand to local communities’ farmed fish outputs for secondary processing into the fish derivatives of Feed, Omega and fillet for export. This will translate into better incomes for the locals and a better standard of living as they will be integrated into the global fish derivatives value chains.

The Government’s main Policy objective of establishing Free Zones was to promote investment in the manufacturing and processing sector in order to boost Uganda’s exports. Arua SEZ is expected to contribute to the attainment of this objective.