Uganda appeals for more BPO, ITES investors

GOVERNMENT

|
Image: NASSCOM president Som Mittal andminister of IT Dr. Ruhakana Rugunda . By BiztechAfrica
NASSCOM president Som Mittal andminister of IT Dr. Ruhakana Rugunda

By Omondi Julius Odera, Kampala, Uganda

Uganda has once again reiterated its goal of being East Africa’s main hub for BPO and ITES sector. This was noted at the just concluded BPO and ITES regional conference held in Kampala.  The conference was organized by NITA-U partnering with UBPOA (Uganda Business Process –Outsourcing Association) and brought together players from across the globe to showcase what the region has to offer in the sector

The chairman for UBPOA, Badru Ntege, wooed the players in the sector who were present like NASSCOM (The premier trade body and the chamber of commerce of the IT-BPO industries in India) to invest in the country. He said: “Uganda offers a unique set of incentives and opportunities to the international outsourcing community as compared to other outsourcing destinations…100% equity ownership, 100% repatriation of capital and divided among others”

He also adds that the country has a large talent pool of English speaking cost competitive and skilled workforce, a growing number of small BPO companies and reliable telecom infrastructure to service the outsourcing community in a very effective manner.

UBPOA chairman also encouraged countries to take advantage of the numerous benefits that accompany BPO so as to reap big from them. “Many countries with lower cost operations and skilled workforce are taking full benefits of the opportunities arising in the BPO sector.” He also adds that this sector is sector is set to experience tremendous growth in Uganda over the next few years, with numerous new firms capitalizing on opportunities such as call centers, operations and providing back-office services to foreign-based companies.

Ntege also complained of the negative image perception that Uganda faces when major international business projects are being developed in East Africa and the region as a whole. “We have seen the preference for our neighbors like Kenya despite their challenges when it comes to elections. Therefore we urge the government to undertake efforts to building positive image of the country and marketing Uganda’s potential to the international business providers.”

The same views were echoed by the executive director to NITA-U James Saaka, “We need to take brand building more seriously so as the country can reap big from this sector.”

Saaka also adds that they are working towards developing and operationalizing BPO standards, accreditation and regulations. At the same time the executive director points at the internet bandwidth cost and its’ infrastructure reliability which he notes that they are working round the clock to ensure that the cost is lowered and it becomes more reliable. “You all know witnessed a few months ago when we had internet disruption due to the damage of the sea cable at the Kenyan coast and that is why we are looking at other alternative sources like Tanzania and South-Sudan so as such scenarios are mitigated,” he noted.

The government which was represented by the minister of IT Dr. Ruhakana Rugunda at the conference emphasized its commitment in the development of the sector. “The government’s vision and strategy is to establish and promote the BPO industry for job creation and socio-economic development and the government has invested high amounts of money in ICT infrastructure like the national backbone infrastructure (NBI) with the aim of bringing internet costs down and also supporting initiatives like BPO industry.

Rugunda also indicated that the government will take serious the challenge of the country’s image branding around the globe. “The government would further undertake marketing and branding of Uganda as a preferred BPO destination in Africa.”

The minister also notes that in order to ensure increased employment creation, the government offered to provide targeted incentives to BPO operators throughout the country. However he was quick to caution, “The intention is not to subsidize or protect nonperforming private sector from competition but to nurture a budding industry to some desired level of maturity by addressing key constraints such as taxes that may stifle innovation and suffocate this infant industry”

Rugunda also challenged the players in the Indian BPO sector led by NASSCOM to invest in the enticing Ugandan economy. “One of the most resilient partners in our economy have been the Indians, and I believe that you are not an exception because I don’t see why you cannot succeed if your brothers have managed to make it big” he urged.

NASSCOM president Som Mittal highlighted the benefits that BOP sector has to an economy. He noted, “In India, IT-BPO revenue aggregate now amounts 7.5% GDP and this is about 100billion dollars. Besides, the industry employs over 12 million people and the most interesting part is that the industry continues to progressively grow.”



Share the News

Get Daily Newsletter

Search News

comments powered by Disqus

MORE GOVERNMENT NEWS

Lawmakers want TSA investigated

Nigeria’s lower house, the House of Representatives, is making moves to investigate how much has come into the Treasury Single Account (TSA). Read More

BVN fished out 40,000 ghost workers

Nigeria’s Minister of Industry, Trade and Investment says the Bank Verification Number introduced by the Central Bank of Nigeria has saved the Federal Government billions of naira. Read More

Kenya embraces online motor vehicle registration to fight corruption

In a bid to weed out corruption and increase efficiency in the road transport sector, the Kenyan government is set to unveil online vehicle registration. Read More

Botswana Post opens new money transfer corridors

BotswanaPost says it has launched another two money transfer routes – to Lesotho Postal Services and Swaziland Postal Services.   Read More

International Conference on the Internet on in Gaborone

The University of Botswana is hosting the First International Conference on the Internet, Cyber Security and Information Systems in Gaborone to the 20th May 2016 at The Gaborone International Convention Center (GICC).  Read More

Again, NCC’s 2.6GHz spectrum auctions fall through

The planned 2.6 gigahertz (GHz) spectrum auction scheduled by Nigerian Communications Commission (NCC) may have fallen through. Read More

Government rules out OTT regulation in Ghana

Ghana’s Deputy Minister of Communication, Ato Sarpong, has told key industry players in Accra that the government has no intention of regulating over-the-top operations in the country.  Read More

Rwanda, MasterCard collaborate on cashless society

The Government of Rwanda has announced a collaboration with MasterCard to fast-track the country’s move to include 90 percent of its citizens in the financial mainstream. Read More

Mobile spam: NCC reads riot act to telcos

Worried by a flurry of complaints, the Nigerian Communications Commission has warned mobile network operators to take decisive action to curb unsolicited text messages and calls to customers. Read More

NCC chief urges Fed Govt to relax forex policy

The Executive Vice Chairman of the Nigerian Communications Commission (NCC), Prof Umar Garba Danbatta, has urged the Federal Government to consider relaxing its forex policy for telecommunications companies. Read More

PRESS OFFICES

Sage EnterpriseSAP AfricaTrust PayVMWareSamsung ElectronicsMitsumi DistributionPhoenix DistributionMTN BusinessSchneider ElectricMultichoiceMicrosoft 4AfrikaNetworks UnlimitedArbor NetworksEricssonTigo Ghana

FEATURED STORY

Government should encourage youths in ICT earlyGovernment should encourage youths in ICT early

Youths should be given more encouragement to develop their ICT skills, an 11-year-old app developer told Kokumo Goodie.

Advertisement

IN DEPTH

IBM Opens First Cloud Data Centre in South AfricaIBM Opens First Cloud Data Centre in South Africa

IBM is opening a new IBM Cloud Data Centre in Johannesburg, South Africa. The new cloud center is the result of a close collaboration with Gijima and Vodacom and is designed to support cloud adoption and customer demand across the continent.  

COMPANY NEWS

Tigo, JI and GES equip teachers on child online protection initiative

Tigo, in partnership with J Initiative (JI), a youth focused non-governmental organisation in Ghana, have committed to protecting children online through policy advocacy, awareness creation, public education ...

Ericsson and King’s College London demonstrate 5G tactile robotic surgery

Ericsson and King’s College London will be demonstrating a 5G use case of tactile robotic surgery at 5G World 2016 in London on 29-30 June.