April 10, 2018 – Plans for domestic motor vehicle manufacturing gained clarity this week after cabinet approved the roadmap for the commercialisation of the Kiira Electronic Vehicle Project.
According to the brief on an April 9, cabinet meeting that was delivered by the minister for ICT and National Guidance Mr. frank Tumwebaze, cabinet agreed to the phased implementation of the project. The minister for Science, Technology and Innovation Dr. Elioda Tumwesigye was tasked to put in place the necessary institutional framework for the project.
Dr. Tumwesigye further told media that UGX20 billion has been allocated to the project in the 2018-17 budget, to kick off a four-year roadmap that will run until 2022.
According to the cabinet brief, commercialisation of the Kiira Electric Vehicle Project is among others expected to stimulate investment by small and medium enterprises in the manufacture of vehicle parts, components and autonomy system.
It will also drive domestic demand for inputs such as steel from iron ore deposits, plastics from oil and gas, and lithium ion batteries from graphite.
It is projected that the project will create more than 2,000 direct jobs and about 12,000 indirect jobs.
Kiira Motors has so far developed three concept vehicles – the Kiira Electric vehicle, the Kiira Smack hybrid drive vehicle and the Kayola Solar Bus.
The corporation is developing the site for automotive assembly in Jinja and has so far signed contracts with the water and power utilities to extend services to the site.
The same meeting also directed the Uganda Revenue Authority to drop the bid for omnibus access to the financial details of bank customers and use the existing mandate to access bank accounts on a case by case basis for purposes of tax audit and assessment.