- African firms are rising up to the continent’s production needs.
- An African company is making quality military wears for some African Armies.
- This development helps bilateral relationships as well as boosts the economy of the company’s host country.
Ugandan President, Yoweri Museveni, recently endorsed the export of military deliveries to Equatorial Guinea. The wares, predominantly military wears, were produced by Southern Ranger Nyanza Limited, popular as Nytil. The delivery included 5,400 packs of military uniforms and accessories for the Equatorial Guinea army mass-produced in Uganda. President Museveni, as well as Ugandan Minister for Defense, Vincent Ssempijja, among other prominent dignitaries were on ground to review the items at the official flagging off ceremony at Entebbe Air base, Uganda.
Ssempijja while speaking at Entebbe, applauded the presidents of Uganda and Equatorial Guinea for the collaborative initiative. He went on to say, “I wish to specifically thank His Excellency Obiang Nguema Mangue who has been behind this strategic effort to link our brotherly countries in the sphere of trade and investments”. According to Ssempijja, Equatorial Guinea and Uganda have been working together in different areas including the areas of Security and Defense. He also mentioned that the scope of the collaboration has widened to accommodate occupations which will amount to improved income for the mutual benefit and socio-economic growth of Africans.
The minister went on to urge other sectors to emulate Nytil, he asked that they explore the existing opportunities in their respective niches and markets, within the region and beyond, so that when they all come together as a country, they can build a robust economy. Mitul Jobanputra, Managing Director of the Picfare Industries Limited, commended President Museveni for his pledge to support the local manufacturing sector and nurture it to significant growth. “Since the advent of Buy Uganda, Build Uganda (BUBU), Nytil has invested in excess of US$ 20 million to either increase production capacity or diversification of product range that has seen us get a fully-fledged medical division that produces personal protective equipment and medical sundries like medical grade cotton wool and gauze,” Jobanputra said, adding that “In line with the Agro manufacturing strategy under NDP3, Nytil has expanded its production capacity for armed forces uniforms and accessories that has enabled us to become one of the largest and finest suppliers in Sub Saharan Africa.”
He also mentioned that Nytil produces tents, ponchos, uniforms, sweaters, overalls, warm suits, T-shirts, over coats, sleeping mats, magazine pouches, towels, bed sheets among others. “We have therefore been able to leverage on our two decades of supply to the armed forces in Uganda to make strategic market entry into Equatorial Guinea.”He said that the Continental Free Trade Area had made provisions for the exporting 5400 cartons of military attires and other accessories to Equatorial. The Nytil Managing Director noted that they aim at reaching other regional markets beyond East Africa with support from government. “Such initiatives are critical in reducing the trade deficit of Uganda, knowing that Uganda imported goods and services worth USD10 billion in 2022 while she exported only about USD 6.0 Billion resulting into the USD 4.0 billion deficit that must be addressed by exporters in Uganda.”
Last year, the Vice President of Equatorial Guinea, Obiang Nguema visited Uganda. Among other good things he pointed out, he was generally impressed by the work going on at the Nytil factory. There, an agreement was reached, and the export was subsequently sent out to Equatorial Guinea; the package also contained uniforms of the police for the central African country.
Nytil has spread its tentacles also making uniforms for the armies of the Democratic Republic of Congo, Burundi, and South Sudan.