Uganda’s first ICT manufacturing and assembling plant in Namanve, SIMI mobile has celebrated its first anniversary.
The company came into force after government signed an agreement with SIMI technologies to promote the manufacturing of ICT electronics in Uganda.
Speaking during the function on Tuesday, the State Minister for Privatization in charge of Investment, Evelyn Anite said it is high time Ugandans started using homemade products.
“I am happy you are flying the flag of Uganda high. If you are a Ugandan and you have not bought a phone assembled locally, how have you supported our economy,”Anite said.
“To the heads of government agencies, you should not wait to be asked to follow suit. If you don’t want to buy locally produced goods, just leave office.”
Minister Anite underscored the role played by companies like Simi mobile in adding to the country’s revenue and employing Ugandans well as they help the country reduce on importation of some goods.
According to the minister, by buying products manufactured abroad, Ugandans are sabotaging their own economy yet they are at the same time demanding for services from government.
Dr.Hatwib Mugasa, the NITA Uganda Executive Director pledged total support to Simi mobile and other companies as they aim at developing the country in terms of technology.
According to David Beecham Okwere, the Chief Executive board secretary of Engo Holdings Group Ltd|SIMI Mobile Uganda, the company has sold over 400,000 mobile phones in the past one year.
“Our focus in the coming year is to see that the plant in Kampala becomes a major contributor of economic growth in the ICT sector by far for Uganda by promoting the government’s initiative of Buy Uganda Build Uganda (BUBU) policy which will reduce the imports of similar products from foreign countries,” Okwere said.
He added that the company is now focused on exporting to the whole of Africa in the forthcoming months.
SIMI technologies, which is Uganda’s first ICT manufacturing and assembling plant located in Namanve assembles smartphones, mobile phones, laptops and radios.
According to officials, at full capacity, the factory runs three production lines; each line with daily production of 2000 feature phones, 1500 smartphones, 800 laptops, 2000 chargers, 4000 USB cables and 4000 sets of earphones and directly employing more than 400 staff.
The company recently exported locally assembled mobile phones to Morocco and Hungary as well launched the first temperature measuring smartphone in Africa.