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Value addition eludes Ugandan textile industry
12
Mar '16
Owing to the delay in implementation of the National Textile Policy, formulated and passed in 2009, the value addition process continues to elude the textile industry in Uganda, a landlocked country in East Africa.

Presently, about 90 per cent of Uganda's cotton is exported unprocessed, resulting in a loss of about Ush500 billion ($149.4 million) annually, according to East African media reports.

“The policy, for example, requires all government primary schools to buy uniforms produced in the country. But this has not happened. The biggest challenge is transferring the policy recommendations to respective ministries during the budgetary formulation process,” said Samuel Ssenkungu, director in charge of the department of trade, industry and co-operatives at the ministry of trade.

The country has more than 38 cotton lint exporters with some ginning. Only about 10 per cent of Uganda's annual cotton output is processed locally and 90 per cent is exported. Due to the lack of value addition the country earns far less revenue than it would otherwise get. A kilogramme of exported cotton fetches approximately $1, whereas a two-fold piece of cloth made from the same quantity of lint can at least fetch $8.

Ssenkungu further said that the lack of funds is hindering the policy's implementation. Uganda produced a decade ago, 254,000 bales of cotton annually, each weighing 185 kg and earned $46.9 million. The same quantity of cotton would have generated about $375. 9 million today, if exported in processed form. (NA)

Fibre2fashion News Desk - India

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