Monday, 21 January 2008

Summit for Alternative Sea Route Needed

From The Monitor, Kampala, Uganda
By Moses Byaruhanga

A lot has been said and written about events in neighbouring Kenya. The region has been affected as Kenya provides a cheaper gateway to the sea for Uganda, Rwanda, Burundi, DRC, and south Sudan. Besides, in case of Uganda, Kenya is our biggest trading partner.

So the situation in Kenya now is affecting both our imports and exports, hence revenue collection by URA and inflow of revenue from exports.

In the past few weeks, focus has been on fuel but if the situation is not brought under control, the effect on our economy will be enormous.

Soon grocery shops will run out of supplies and the rising prices as a result of reduction in supply will lead to inflationary tendencies. This calls for Uganda and the other affected countries mentioned above to exploit an alternative cheap route to the sea.

Dar es Salaam and Tanga, both in Tanzania, come into picture. Currently, the Dar route is slightly more expensive but this can be worked on by reducing the costs in infrastructure, railway, road between Dar and Mwanza.

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