President Yoweri Museveni has received credentials of the new Ambassador of the Russian Federation to Uganda Semivolos Vladlen.
Amb. Semivolos was accompanied by the Chargé d’Affaires Dr. Evgeny Kalashnikov.
The president told his guest that the relationship between Africa and the Soviet Union started immediately after the communist revolution against socialism way back by 1917.
“Since that time Africa has been working with the Soviet Union. Uganda has been working with Moscow since its independence in 1962”, he said.
Museveni was also happy to learn that a Russian business delegation was due to visit the country to explore investment opportunities.
“I want that Russian delegation to come. I will welcome them myself. Russia is always our friend”, he said.
During the meeting that was also attended by the Minister of Foreign Affairs General Jeje Odong and other officials, Museveni emphasized that inter-ministerial meetings between the two countries should always take place and on schedule to follow up on commitments.
The Russian Ambassador Vladlen Semivolos told the president that Russia has good bilateral cooperation with Uganda and is willing to foster more development partnerships.
“By next year, a Russian business association visit Uganda to establish areas of investment especially in coffee trade, Information Technology and security,” he said.
The relations between Uganda and Russia have in recent years blossomed as the East African country is seen to be slowly moving away from the West.
In 2019, President Museveni was among the few African leaders who were invited for the first-ever Russia-Africa summit in the Russian Coastal city of Sochi.
Speaking at the sidelines of the summit, Museveni hailed Russia for always supporting the development of Uganda in terms of defence and security and Africa at large.
“Russia and Uganda are cooperating very well in the areas of defence and security by buying good quality Russian equipment including aircraft,” Museveni said.
He told Putin that ties between the two countries started way back during Africa’s fight for independence when Russia and China supported Africans in their fight for freedom.
According to Museveni, the relationship has grown through the years and noted that the Russia- China summit was long overdue.
“It will strengthen trade and bilateral relations between Africa and Russia. We are working on building workshops for maintenance and overhaul of equipment we get from Russia, like the aircraft which will greatly reduce costs,” Museveni said.
In response, Putin told Museveni that he sees possibilities for cooperation between Russia and Uganda along the trajectories of construction and cyber security, as well as on other tracks.
“We also see possibilities for cooperation in the field of construction, development of information technologies and cybersecurity, agriculture, medicine and pharmaceutics, telecommunications, operation and servicing of helicopters, as well as ecology,” Putin said.
In January, Russian President, Vladmir Putin was among the first world leaders to congratulate Museveni upon re-election as president.
Uganda and Russia maintain cooperation in the fields of defence, education, energy, culture, trade and investment.
Uganda’s bilateral trade with Russia has doubled over the last ten years, from $30m (sh112b) in 2009 to over $74m (sh270b) by the end of 2018, much of it in mining and ICT.