Owners of 500 business enterprises are to benefit from a training programme funded by the German Agency for International Cooperation (GIZ) with priority given to women-led start-ups.
The training will start this February and run for two weeks and will be offered by the Stanbic Business Incubator Limited (SBIL), a subsidiary of Stanbic Uganda Holdings Limited (SUHL), which supports and nurtures small and medium enterprises to prepare them for business growth.
SBIL Chief Executive, Tony Otoa, in a February 8 press release said the proposed training will be delivered with a key focus on three core areas namely; access to markets, access to finance and business operational skills necessary for start-ups, management and growth.
He said special attention will also be given to female owned businesses.
However, he added, in order to qualify for the training, the businesses must have been in existence for more than two years, have at least five employees and should be operating within Kampala, Mukono and Wakiso.
SBIL initially developed the Enterprise Development Programme (EDP) in 2018, to focus on identifying and building the capacity of enterprises that could potentially penetrate and actively participate in Uganda’s oil and gas sector.
Uganda has embarked on the development phase to extract its 6.5 billion barrels of oil in place, where 1.4 billion barrels are considered to be recoverable in the Albertine Graben.
This comes after the oil companies reached a Final Investment Decision (FID) in February 2022, which will see $10b worth of investment poured into the Ugandan economy.
The investment will include a refinery, a multi-purpose pipeline, a 1,445 kilometre crude oil export pipeline from Hoima district in Uganda to Tanzania, two central processing facilities at Kingfisher and Tilenga in Kikuube and Buliisa districts, respectively.
The Petroleum Authority of Uganda (PAU) hopes that 40 per cent of the monies to be invested during the development phase will be retained through national content.
During oil production, people in their thousands are expected to pour into the oil-rich Albertine region seeking opportunities in the sector.
This in turn is anticipated to create a huge demand for services such as foodstuffs, Information and Communication Technology (ICT), logistics, supply of building materials, iron and steel, accommodation, leisure and transport, among others.
Experts say local businesses participation is key since it will boost their competitiveness and Uganda’s growth Domestic Product (GDP) by 20 per cent by end of the construction phase, employing 14,000 people directly and 45,000 people indirectly.
The programme, Otoa said, has since been modified to support Ugandan micro-small and medium enterprises (MSMEs) to become more competitive, attain sustainable growth while also creating jobs.
Only interested trainees whose businesses are already registered with the Uganda Registration Services Bureau (URSB) may apply. Training slots will be offered to owners and one employee.
Key sectors of focus include agribusiness, food and beverages, trade, consumer goods and supplies, green businesses, tourism, hospitality and catering services.
Others are construction, fabrication and civil works, transport and logistics, health, professional services, power and Infrastructure.