‘Ugandans showing growing interest in trade with Turkey’
KAMPALA - Anadolu Agency
The number of applications from Ugandans for Turkish visa doubled in 2019. The two countries work to boost trade from the current $40 million.
Ugandans are showing a growing interest in trade with Turkey, with many taking the next step to travel to the country and buy merchandise or sell their products, according to the Turkish ambassador to Uganda.
“The number of visa applications doubled in 2019 compared to 2018, and in the first two months of this year, visa applications have tripled [compared to the same period last year],” Kerem Alp said.
Alp said Ugandan traders were interested in buying Turkish products because of their good quality, while others visited Turkey to seek markets for their products because Turkey is a large market.
“We are going to expedite the visa process to make it easy for Ugandans wishing to visit Turkey,” he said.
The diplomat also said there is a growing number of Turkish nationals visiting Uganda to open new businesses or set up franchises. He said a delegation from the Antalya Chamber of Commerce and Industry will be visiting Uganda in March to explore opportunities.
“They want to establish industrial free zones and bring the knowhow to Uganda.”
Alp also said some of the Turkish businesses that have already set up shop in Uganda are creating employment for locals.
He said some of the companies will add value to the Ugandan economy by processing local products such as coffee, textiles, fruits and other goods before exporting them to overseas markets.
Some of the goods that Turkey exports to Uganda include furniture, lubricants, textiles, and energy products.
Uganda mainly sells agricultural products, including fruits, tea and coffee, abroad.
Alp also said that Turkey is planning to build a Turkish trade center in Kampala together with several Ugandan and Turkish business organizations. He noted that the center, which they hope will be functional sometime next year, will be a permanent fixture exhibiting
Turkish products, including machinery. Those interested in the products can purchase them online.
The diplomat said the two countries are also working on boosting their trade which currently stands at $40 million.