Apply Now to the Stanbic Business Incubator Enterprise Development Program!

The Stanbic Business Incubator invites applications from Uganda’s small and medium-sized enterprises (SMEs) to participate in an enterprise development training aimed at enhancing local SME’s capacities and promoting business resilience and sustainability.

APPLY NOW

Why your business should enroll

The Stanbic Business Incubator provides an enabling environment for entrepreneurs in small and medium enterprises through the following programmes:

  • Business Development Services and Business support
  • Training and follow-up support interventions
  • Networking events, focus group discussions and access to subject matter experts
  • Mentoring and coaching for entrepreneurs after formal training
  • Provide opportunities for access to markets and access to financeThe next stage of development and support is targeting SMEs in various sectors from Central, Eastern, Western and Northern Uganda to participate in the August 2020 intake.

How to Apply:

Interested SMEs in Uganda (Central, Eastern, Western & Northern regions) that would like to be a part of the program can apply through https://survey.zohopublic.com/zs/u4bf6V For more information, please call 0312 226 700


How to Assess Your Business Risk (Risk Assessment Tool)

Assessing Your Business Risk

The International Labour Organization (ILO) has developed a Self-Assessment Tool that is designed to help small and medium-sized enterprises (SMEs) during the COVID-19 crisis. The COVID-19 Business Info Hub has adapted the tool for use in Uganda.

The goal of the tool is to help SMEs like you to assess the level of risk and vulnerability of your business by looking at four key aspects of your business called the “4Ps” by the ILO:

People

How are your workers and their families affected by COVID-19?

Processes

How are the everyday operations of your business affected?

Profits

To what extent is your income and revenue affected?

Partnerships

How is the environment around your business affected by COVID?


 (WEBINAR) Re-opening in a Post COVID-19 Environment: Practical Solutions for SMEs 

CLICK HERE TO WATCH THE WEBINAR

Please note that the webinar will not be accessible until 4:00pm on Tuesday, June 16th


Re-opening in a Post COVID-19 Environment:

Practical Solutions for SMEs 


 

The COVID-19 Business Info Hub is launching a webinar series to provide practical advice and solutions for small and medium enterprises (SMEs) through engaging discussions with expert panelists. The first session, Re-opening in a Post COVID-19 Environment: Practical Solutions for SMEs will be held on Tuesday, June 16th at 4.00 pm. The webinar will provide SMEs and industry stakeholders an opportunity to discuss the ”new normal” and share practical solutions that can help the sector in this time of crisis. 

Panelists include Gideon BadagawaExecutive Director of the Private Sector Foundation Uganda (PSFU)Daniel BirungiExecutive Director of Uganda Manufacturers Association (UMA), and Hope Sharon KwiyocwinySales and Marketing Manager of HMH Rainbow Limited, YO KUKU. The session will be facilitated by Tony OtoaExecutive Director of Stanbic Bank Business Incubator, and hosted on Blue Jeans. The session is open to ALL, irrespective of the financial institution you bank with!

The webinar comes at a critical time. Uganda has been on lockdown following the COVID-19 pandemic for close to three months, resulting in a myriad of challenges for SMEs, including disruptions in the supply chain, income loss, and changing work environments. A socio-economic impact assessment of COVID-19 on the formal sector and SMEs by the United Nations Capital Development Fund (UNCDF) conducted in April 2020 reveals that 85 percent of all businesses anticipatefinancial distress after three months of lockdown. The expectation of loss is at least 90 percent across companies of all sizes.

The plight of SMEs during COVID-19 poses significant challenges to the Ugandan economy. As the engine of growth for economic development, innovation, and wealth creation, SMEs employ over 2.5 million people in Uganda and account for approximately 90 percent of the entire private sector, generating over 80 percent of the manufacturing output that contributes 20 percent of the gross domestic product (GDP).

With this in mind, Stanbic Bank Uganda has deliberately prioritized efforts to support the SME sector in their time of need. In partnership with ConsumerCentrix, Stanbic Bank Uganda has launched the COVID-19 Business Info Hub – a website dedicated to providing useful, practical information on key interventions including business training, useful government directives and industry interviews to enable SMEs to stay afloat during COVID-19. 

We look forward to engaging with you on this relevant discussion towards practical solutions for SMEs. 

For desktop users please click on this link: https://bluejeans.com/268588245 to join the webinar which will automatically take you into the webinar through the Blue Jeans application. We recommend using Blue Jeans on your desktop for a superior and simpler user experience (this line may or may not be necessary to add).

If you are not able to join through desktop, here is how to join the meeting using your mobile phone:

You’ve been invited as a guest to attend a Blue Jeans video meeting. To join from your Android or iOS phone (or tablet), follow the instructions below (you do not need to sign up for your own BlueJeans account.):

First download the BlueJeans app, directly from Google Play or Apple store (these links also found at bluejeans.com/downloads), or

  1. Click the meeting URL link from your calendar invite
  2. Click “Join with the app”
  3. Click to install the BlueJeans app
  4. Press Install, from the Google Play or Apple app site
  5. The BlueJeans app is now installed on your phone

Then to join the meeting

  1. Click the meeting URL link from your calendar invite
  2. Click “Join with the app”
  3. With the blue jeans app, already installed, you’ll arrive in a page where you can enter your name or disable your video (if you choose). Press the green “Join Meeting” button.
  4. Click OK If you are asked to allow BlueJeans to access your microphone or camera, or push notifications:

-If your wifi signal is “spotty” (i.e. your audio and/or video images are not good):

-move to an area with a stronger signal, closer to your wifi access point

-swipe the whole button upwards to switch into low bandwidth mode- your camera will be turned off and you will not see any participants- this preserves the limited bandwidth for audio only (you will see screen shares, if they are shown)

-and to improve your audio further, wear earbuds, especially if using android

Etiquette

Attendees will “raise their hand” if they want to interact live in the meeting (be able to speak and be seen): Click the hand, then click “Send Request” to interact live (the Moderator will then review your request). If approved, you’ll receive a confirmation. Unless you are asking a question, please keep your audio to mute throughout the duration of the webinar.

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What does the Purchase Managers Index tell us about the effects of the COVID-19 pandemic?

What does the Purchase Managers Index tell us about the effects of the COVID-19 pandemic?

The COVID-19 Business Info Hub spoke with Mr. Kenneth Kitungulu, Executive and Head, Global Markets at Stanbic Bank Uganda, to understand what the Purchase Managers Index can tell us about the effects of the COVID-19 pandemic and how SMEs should prepare for the future.

What is the Purchase Managers Index and why is it important?

The Purchase Managers Index is an accurate, comprehensive suite of economic indicators in Africa. It was started in 2016 in Uganda and 400 companies contribute monthly to provide updates on business and economic indicators in different sectors of the economy. It is used by Bank of Uganda and others in decision-making.

What does the Purchase Managers Index I tell us about the effects of the COVID-19 pandemic?

Over the past few months, Purchase Managers have indicated that there has been a significant drop in output. Over 90% have indicated a decline in business activities. 36% of companies have had to scale back on employment, and more than 80% have purchased less input in February and March in line with decreased demand. Delivery times have increased significantly, and there has been an overall reduction in prices. For the first time since the PMI was launched, companies are reporting that they are less optimistic about future growth.

What can SMEs do to better prepare for the future?

SMEs must adopt skills around good governance structures within the entity, including separation of ownership from management and ensuring proper accounting policies. It is also critical to ensure there is a good cash buffer, because one thing that this crisis has taught us is that you cannot always predict the future, and we need to be better prepared.


Ekitongole ki PSFU kikunze kitya ba memba baakyo ne gavumenti okuyamba bizinensi okuyita mu katyaabaga kano aka covid-19

Ekitongole ki PSFU kikunze kitya ba memba baakyo ne gavumenti okuyamba bizinensi okuyita mu katyaabaga kano aka covid-19?

Entabiro y’amawulire agakwaata ku  bizinensi mu biseera bya covid-19 yayogeddeko ne Francis Kaisirinya, Executive Director wa Private Sector Foundation Uganda kungeri PSFU gyekwataganye ne ba membe baayo kko ne gavumenti okuyamba bizinensi mukaseera kano akaakatyaabaga jka corona

Omulimu gwaffe nga PSFU okuyamba bizinsensi kwa mirundi esatu. Ekisooka, okukiikirira ba memba baffe nga tuteesa ne gavumkenti, eky’okubiri, okuzimba nokuyamba bizinensi okubeera ennungi, n’eky’okusatu, okunoonya ensimbi okwannganga okusoomooza kwezifuna.

Nteekateeka ki PSFU zeekolako okuyamba bizinensi entonotono okuyita mu kaseera kano aka covid-19?

PSFU egenda mmaaso n’okuteesa ne gavumenti ku nsonga ezikwaata kuba nekolera jange omuli okulaba nti gavumenti esasula mangu abajiguza ebyamaguzi, okuyamba ebitongole by’ensimbi okukkakkanya ebyeetaago by’okusasula looni, okuyamba bizinensi okuba ne ssente nokufuna amabanja agataliiko bukwakkulizo bungi n’okussa essira ku nsonga ezikulaakukanya bizinensi. Ebiteeso byetwaawa gavumenti yatandika obikkiriza era PSFU essubira nti n’ebilala ebinaayongerwaako bijja kuteekebwa munkola

PSFU EYAMBA ETYA BIZINENSI OBUTEREEVU?

Kyeeraga mu lwaatu nti bannanyini bizinensi balina okwettanira enkola y’omutimbagano. Nga tusinziira kunzirukana y’emirimu, PSFU eteesa ebintu ebiyinza okutumbula enkola eno nokuba nti weri mubujjuvu ate esoboka okweetooloola eggwanga lyonna. Ku ludda lwa banannyini bizinensi, PSFU, eyamba mukulanga n’okutendeka abakozi amagezi ag’ekikugu nga bakola emirimu gyaabwe. Obusuubuzi mu bizinsensi zino bweetaaga mu enkola ey’omutimbagano. Makampuni agaagala okweetaba mukutendekebwa kuno gasaba gaanukule nga omulanga gwa PSFU bweguba guzze

Bizinensi zisobola kkolagana zitya ne PSFU?

PSFU esangibwa ku Plot 43 Nakasero Road Kampala

Tukubire ku: +256312263850

Email: klmusoke@psfuganda.org.ug


Obubaka bwa Anne Juuko – Akulira Stanbic Bank Uganda

Uganda, bizinsensi entonotono (SME) zikwaata ekifo kya ku mwanjo nnyo mu by’enfuna, obuyiiya n’okutondawo obugagga.

- Anne Juuko
Akulira Stanbic Bank Uganda

Okutumbula bizinensi za Uganda entonotono – olufungo lw’enkulakulana

Obubaka bwa Anne Juuko – Akulira Stanbic Bank Uganda

Mu mirimu gyonna ejikolebwa mu Uganda, bizinsensi entonotono (SME) zikwaata ekifo kya ku mwanjo nnyo mu by’enfuna, obuyiiya n’okutondawo obugagga. Mu alipoota ezikoleddwa ekitongole ekifuga ba musiga nsimbi ki Uganda Investment Authority, bizinensi ez’ekika kino zikola ebitundu 49 mu mirimu egy’obuweereza, ebitundu 33% mu by’obusuubuzi, ebitundu 10% mumakolero n’ebitundu 8% mu mirimu emilala

Ekyeewuunyisa ate nga kituufu kiri nti abantu abasukka mu bukadde bubiri n’ekitundu beebakola emirimu egy’enjawulo mu bizinensi ez’ekika kino. Bano bakola ebitundu 90% mu mirimu egy’obwannanyini, abakola ebintu ebikolebwa mu makolero ebisukka mu bitundu 80% nga bino bikola ebyongera 20% ku by’enfuna by’eggwanga lyonna. Naye wadde nga kino kiri bweekiti, emirimu gy’ekika kino jilina obuzibu mu by’ensimbi, amagezi ag’ekikugu, okukuuma ebiwandiiko, enzirukanya y’emirimu etali ya mulembe, obusobozi obutono okubasobozesa okukuuma amateeka n’obukwakkulizo bw’endagaano z’emirimu, n’okuvuganya okwamanyi wano ate n’ebweeru weggwanga.

Byonna ebyo biviiriddeko bizinensi zino okugwa amangu ddala nga zaakatandika oba ezo eziba ziwonye okusigala nga ziddukanyizibwa mungeri ey’ekiboggwe era ngatezikula. Bweetyo nno Stanbic Bank kyeeva yasalawo mubugenderevu essira okulissa mukuyamba bizinensi ez’eekika kino. Twoongedde okutema empenda nga tuyita mu banywanyi baffe okuyamba bizinensi zino okukula ate ziwangaale.

Obuyambi bwa Stanbic mu kaseera kano aka covid-19

Mukiseera kino ensi yonna eyita mu kiseera ekizibu naddala munsonga za bizinensi era nga tewari amanyi kiddako. Nga ekitongole ky’eby’ensimbi ekiri kuntabiro y’eby’enfuna, embeera eno tujiwulira era tumanyi bulungi obulabe bweekoze mubulamu bwammwe obwabulijjo ne munzirukanya y’emirimu. Awo nno tulina essanyu okuba nti tuli kitundu ku ntabiro y’amawulire agakwaata ku bizinensi mu biseera bya covid-19 , ekifo wojja okusanga amawulire gonna agakwaata  kungeri gyosobola okwanganga mu okusoomoozebwa kuno era eno yengeri Stanbic Bank gyegenda okkuyambamu mukaseera kano

Okwongerayo ebbanga bizinensi zino mwezirina okusasuliramu looni
Stanbic etaddewo akalembereza nga kawanvuko ku looni za bizinensi neza ssekinnoomu kibasobozese okuyita mu katyaabaga k’eby’enfuna akavudde ku kirwadde kya covid-19. Tusaba ba kasitoma baffe bonna nga ennyingiza yaabwe ekoseddwa olw’ekilwadde kino basabe ebbanga mwebalina okusasuliramu looni zaabwe lyongezebweeyo okutuuka ku bbanga lya nnaku 90 okusinziira ku mbeera nga bwebanyize. Tusaba ba kasitoma baffe okutuukirira ba business banker, relationship managers oba customer care center yaffe.

Eky’okuddamu kyaffe mu bya bizinensi ne Bank kiyiiyiziddwa okuja mu bweetaavu bwa bizinensi entonotono mu Uganda. Tukutte olugendo lwokugaziya enkola yaffe nga bwetuzimba Bank ey’omulembe gwa tekinologiya egenda okuyamba mmwe ba kasitoma baffe aba bizinensi entonotono. Enterprise Banking eyogera eri ebizibu byennyini n’ebiluubirirwa by aba kasitoma baffe okukula okusinga kukuyitibwa bizinensi entonotono

Obuyambi bwa Stanbic munkulakulana ya bizinensi entonotono.

Nga eggwanga, Uganda tesobola kukula nga bizinensi zino teziyambiddwa kukula eyo y’ensonga lwaaki tukitwaala nga kikulu okuziyamba ku Stanbic Bank. Stanbic yatandikawo ejjalurizo lya bizinensi mu 2018 nekigendererwa ky’okutendeka, n’okutumbula amagezi ag’ekikugu mukukulakulanya bizinensi ez’ekika kino. Okutendekebwa kwa bweereere nga n’ekisinga obukulu tolina kuba kasitoma wa Stanbic Bank okukweetabamu. Entekateka eno tujigaziiyizza era netuggulawo amaalurizo amalala mu Hoima, Mbarara ne Gulu okusobozesa n’abantu abali mubitundu ebyo okufuna omukisa guno.gunno

Stanbic n’enkola y’omutimbagano
Stanbic erina enkola ey’omulembe eri ba nannyini bizinensi okukole’mirimu gyaabwe ku byuuma bikali magezi era abakozi baffe babeerawo okubaweereza ku ssimu ne email buli lwekisoboka

Ba kasitoma ba bizinensi entonotono:
Enterprise Online: Osobola okunyumirwa empeereza eno ey’obweereere okuddukanya eby’eetaago bya bizinensi byo byonna wonna wooli. Okumanya ebisingawo tutuukirire ku enterprisedirectug@stanbic.com

Enterprise Direct: Bano bbo baddamu masimu. Bakubire oyogere ne business banker kunsonga yonna ekwaatagana ne bizinensi yo. MTN- 0312 222 660 or Airtel -0200 546 600 or UTL-0417 266 600.
Tweeyama okusigala nga tuyamba ba kasitoma baffe mu kaseera kano. Fenna wamu tufube okulaba nga tweekuuma nga tuli balamu era tujja kkola kyonna ekisoboka okulaba nga bizinensi yo eyitimuka mukaseera kano n’emubiseera ebijja mmaaso

 

Mweebale nnyo

Anne Juuko

Chief Executive, Stanbic Bank Uganda.


Nina obuzibu okusaula loan yange mu microfinance. Nkole ntya?

Nina obuzibu okusaula loan yange mu microfinance. Nkole ntya?

Ekibuuzo: Nkole ntya bwemba nina obuzibu okusasula looni yange eya Microfinance?

Answer: Teweelariikirira! Uganda Microfinance Regulatory Authority (UMRA) ekola kyonna ekisoboka okuyamba bizinensi entonotono mukaseera kano. Tuukirira micro finance yo   mangu ddala omanye kyebasobola okukukolera kubikwaatagana nokusasula looni yo

Uganda Microfinance Regulatory Authority (UMRA) elagidde ebitongole byonna ebiwola sente n’abantu ssekinnoomu okuwa abantu bonna abeewola naye nga bizinensi zaabwe zikoseddwa ekilwadde kino ebbanga eddala mwebalina okusasulira sente nga ensonga bazikola emu kweemu nga bweeba ezze

Bino byolina okumanya:

  • Bwooba wafuna looni nga omweezi gwa April 2020 tegunnatuuka era nga obadde osasula bulungi, osobola okusaba ebbanga eddala mwoosasulira okuva mukitongole ekyakuwola ssente

 

  • Kino kitegeeza nti osobola okukeerewamu okusasula okumala emyeezi 3 ku bitundutundu byolina okusasula namagoba agaba gagenzeeko. Kino era kitegeeza nti ojja kuba olina okusasula looni yo mubujjuvu byaayo, namagoba gonna n’ebisale ebilala nga bwemwabikkaanyaako n’ekitongole gyeweewola. UMRA eweze okusasula kwa sente enkadde ezibanjibwa naye nga akakkwakkulizo kali nti muddamu nemujiteesaako okujisasula mu bbanga eritasukka myeezi 12. Kitegeeza nti okyaasobola okuteesa n’ekitongole ekyakuwola singa oba olinaye sente zootaasasula.
  • Okuddamu okuteesa ku looni yo olwa covid-19 tekijja kukosa bwesimbu bwolina mukusasula amabanja
  • Waliwo amateeka agakuuma gwwe omweewozi abawola gebalina okugoberera okuyiya mukaseera kano okutuuka nga 31st March 2021.

Sigala ewaka oyogere n’ekitongole kyo bwooba olina obuzi mukusasula looni yo. Kino kiyamba bizinensi yo wamu n’ekitongole gyeweewola okusigala nga kyiri mumbeera ennungi nebwewabaawo okukeerewa mukusasula. Kozesa emitimbagano  egyateekebwaawo ekitongole gyeweewola mukiseera kino

Question: What can I do if I am having trouble paying my microfinance business loan?

Answer: There is no need to panic! The Uganda Microfinance Regulatory Authority (UMRA) is taking action to help small and medium businesses right now. Contact your microfinance institution right away and find out what they can do for you concerning your loan repayment.

The Uganda Microfinance Regulatory Authority (UMRA) has instructed microfinance institutions and Money Lenders to grant a moratorium or deferment for loan repayments to borrowers that have been affected by the pandemic on a case by case basis.

Here is what you need to know:

  • If you received a loan prior April 2020 and you were repaying on time, you can apply for a moratorium with your microfinance institution
  • Having a moratorium means that you may be able to delay payments for up to 3 months on loan installment and interest accrued. This means that you will still need to repay the loan in full, with all interest and charges as agreed with your microfinance institution.  UMRA has suspended the payment of arrears as a pre-condition for restructuring loan term for up to 12 months, meaning that you can negotiate with your microfinance institution even if you have arrears.
  • Restructuring of your loans as a result of the COVID-19 pandemic will not negatively impact your credit risk profile.
  • There are consumer protection guidelines in place by UMRA to protect you, which lenders must adhere to through 31st March 2021

Stay home and talk with your microfinance institution if you are having trouble with loan repayments. It is in the best interest of your business – and of your microfinance institution – for you to succeed, even if there is a delay in payment.  Use digital channels made available by your lender during this time.


Emitemwa gyange egy’emisolo njikola ntya mu kaseera kano aka COVID-19?

Emitemwa gyange egy’emisolo njikola ntya mu kaseera kano aka COVID-19?

Ekibuuzo:  Kiki kyensobola okukola bwenfuna obuzibu okusasula emisolo emilimu gyange bwejiba tejitambula bulungi mukaseera kano aka covid-19?

Ekiddibwaamu: Toba nakutya. Gavumenti ya Uganda elina enteekateeka okuyamba bizinensi entonotono nga eyo eyiyo. Ekitongole ky’emisolo empeereza ezisinga yziteeka ku mutimbagano, okkukuuma nga oli mulamu, n’okweewala okkutambuza mukiseera kino eky’okusigala awaka.

Bino byolina okumanya:

  • URA eyongezzaayo emyeezi ebiri okuwayo ebiwandiiko by’emisolo (genda ku self-service tab, how to use e-services, returns)
    • Okuwaayo biwandiiko bya Corporate tax oba emisolo gya kampuni eby’omwaaka oguggwaako mu September kwongezeddwaayo okutuuka nga 31st May 2020.
    • Okuwaayo ebiwandiiko bya PAYE, VAT, Local Excise Duty, Withholding Tax ne Lotteries and Gaming kwongezeddwaayo okutuuka nga 30th April 2020.

 

  • Emisolo jilina okusasulwa era tejisonyiyibwa. Nsalessale naye tayongezeddwaayo
    • Bwooba tosobola kusasula misolo mu bujjuvu, waayo entegeeragana yo ne URA okusasula mubitundu
    • Manya nti okulemwa okusasula ebitundutundu nga bwewakkanya ne URA kiyinza okkuviiramu okuwa engassi, okusazzaamu endagano yo okusasula ebitundu oba okubawa sente eziri ku akawunti yo okusasula sente zonna eziba zisigaddeyo n’engassi yaakwo
    • Omuwi w’omusolo avaayo nayogera emisolo jaataasasula nga takakiddwa tasasula magoba agabeera ku ngassi eteekeddwa okusasula kumisolo ejitaasasulwa. Emisolo gyonna ejibanjibwa wabula jjo jiba jilina okusasulwa
  • Sasulira ewaka nga okozesa omutimbagano
    • Online Banking/EFT/RTGS/Online Debit Banks,
    • Agency Banking n’okukozesa VISA/MasterCard ku Stanbic Bank, ABSA and UBA,
    • PayWay okweetooloola eggwa lyonna,
    • Mobile Money (MTN and Airtel).

Sigala ewaka weekuume nga oli mulamu!

Engeri gyotufunamu

URA yasigala nga nzigula bwooba oyagala empeereza nga tosobola jjifuna ku mutimbagano. Genda ku https://www.ura.go.ug. Nga olina kyeweebuuza oba kyoyagala okuyugamba, email: services@ura.go.ug oba kuba (256) 417-442097, 0417444602 oba 0800117000 or 0800217000 ezitali zaakusasulira

Question: What can I do if I am having trouble paying my taxes while my business suffers during COVID-19?

Answer: Do not fear! The Government of Uganda is taking action to help small and medium businesses like yours. The Uganda Revenue Authority (URA) is offering most services online – to keep you safe, and to keep you from having to move during a time when it is important to stay at home.

Here is what you need to know:

  • The URA has offered an extension of 2 months to file returns (go to self-service tab, how to use e-services, returns)
    • Corporate tax filling for September year ends, is extended until 31st May 2020.
    • PAYE, VAT, Local Excise Duty, Withholding Tax and Lotteries and Gaming filling is extended until 30th April 2020.
  • Taxes need to be paid; they are not waived, and the deadline for payment has not been extended.
    • If you cannot pay your taxes in full, submit a Memorandum of Understanding with URA to pay in installments
    • Be aware that failure to pay tax installments as negotiated may result in penalties, cancellation of the agreed installment payments or garnishing your bank account for the entire outstanding balance, interest and potentially penalties.
    • Taxpayers who voluntarily disclose tax liabilities which had not been disclosed in prior years or months have been given a waiver on interest and penalties for unpaid taxes. The principal tax liabilities must be paid.
  • Pay from home using online platforms
    • Online Banking/EFT/RTGS/Online Debit Banks,
    • Agency Banking and use of VISA/MasterCard for Stanbic Bank, ABSA and UBA,
    • PayWay services across the country,
    • Mobile Money (MTN and Airtel).

Stay home and stay safe!

Important Contact Information

URA remains operational to offer services that cannot be accessed online. Visit https://www.ura.go.ug. For inquiries and feedback, email: services@ura.go.ug or call (256) 417-442097, 0417444602 or Toll-free lines on 0800117000 or 0800217000.


How is PSFU engaging its members and government to support businesses through the COVID-19 crisis?

How is PSFU engaging its members and government to support businesses through the COVID-19 crisis?

The COVID-19 Business Info Hub spoke with Francis Kisirinya, Deputy Executive Director of Private Sector Foundation Uganda (PSFU), about the ways in which PSFU is engaging its members and government to support businesses through the COVID-19 crisis.

Our role as PSFU to support businesses is three-fold: first, representation and engagement with government; second, building and supporting businesses to be able to do their business better; and third, mobilizing resources to address the challenges they face.

What advocacy efforts is PSFU undertaking to support SMEs during this time?

PSFU has been and continues to be actively engaged in discussions with the government on issues critical to businesses in the private sector including ensuring timely payments by the government to suppliers, supporting the financial sector in relaxing loan repayment requirements for some borrowers, supporting businesses in maintaining liquidity and accessing affordable finance, and highlighting the importance of business development services. Proposals PSFU has made are already being adopted [by government], and [PSFU] is optimistic that additional suggestions will soon be implemented.

How does PSFU support businesses directly?

It is very clear that business owners need to enhance digital skills. From a policy perspective, PSFU is proposing things that can be done to improve infrastructure and internet availability across the country. On the side of business owners, PSFU offers support with publicity as well as skills building for employees as they work. MSMEs trading today need to include a digital delivery channel. Companies interested in participating in training are encouraged to respond to PSFU’s calls for proposals.

How can businesses engage with PSFU?

PSFU Services is found on Plot 43 Nakasero Road Kampala

Call us on: +256312263850

Email: klmusoke@psfuganda.org.ug

Twitter: @psfug

Facebook: Private Sector Foundation Uganda (PSFU)

Skills Development Facility email contact: dmugoya@psfuganda.org.ug

https://sdfuganda.org/

Q: Introduction

My name is Francis Kisirinya. I am the Deputy Executive Director of Private Sector Foundation Uganda. My day job is to ensure that I am able to link the private sector to policymakers and able to help them improve any issues they have via our programs. We support their capacity building and mobilize resources to support the private sector in Uganda. PSFU has 250 members, which are groups that come from and cover sectors like manufacturing, education, hospitality, insurance, banking, agriculture, mining, trade, commerce – every part of the economy is represented. Those are the direct members. Indirectly, if you look are those organizations and the members under them, we have almost 50,000 businesses indirectly represented and engaged by us.

Q: What is PSFU’s role in support to the private sector and SMEs in particular?

Our role as PSFU is three-fold: first, representation. We represent MSMEs [Micro Small and Medium Enterprises] in places where they are not located. For instance, not all of our traders in markets and shopping malls will be sitting down with government to discuss policy. We have a mechanism through which we reach the members, through the organizations that they are members of. We represent them in government, in terms of policy making. We conduct research and look at policy options and engage with government to discuss policies that will aid their businesses. The second mandate is to build and support businesses to be able to do their business better. You need skills, capital, technology, and so on and so forth. It is our role to be aware of these things and ensure that you benefit from them, that you build your capacity to be able to compete. We also are required to mobilize resources to address your issues. For instance, the country has substantial competitiveness challenges, both at the national level and among our businesses. We look out for resources to help businesses deal with issues affecting their competitiveness. If you look at manufacturing, for instance, they face issues in terms of technology. As PSFU, we can intervene in this area to identify funders, providers of those types of technology so businesses can identify and implement this technology to be able to compete with everyone doing business in the country.

Q: What considerations does PSFU have for smaller member groups such as SACCOs?

For smaller member groups such as SACCOs, we have a two or three track arrangement. First, they must be our members. As members, they are able to discuss and bring their issues [forward]. We bring you together so that you are able to network and work with others. The second thing is that we work with small enterprises in increasing their ability to do their businesses better. One of the things that is a big challenge for SACCOs is in terms of access and utilization of technology. Today’s consumer wants to trade on their phone, banking on their phone, access loans on their phone. Many SACCOs do not have this particular capacity to access this technology. PSFU is actively engaging with providers to make sure SACCOs can access things like this. We are also actively engaging with the government to make sure that SACCOs are able to have some resources that are affordable to on-lend to members of the SACCOs.

Q: What has the impact of COVID-19 been on the SME sector?

PSFU has grouped the impact into three areas; the first one is the markets. Because of the various decisions and new standard operating procedures that have been instituted (such as social distancing), businesses’ access to markets have been curtailed. People are not able to go shop. Those who shop and those who do the trading themselves have not been able to go [to markets]. This is also true for those exporting goods. Those exporting goods are also affected. It is also true for those obtaining supplies, whether locally or through the international community. They are not able to access these particular markets. This has a lot of implications down the roads because activity has been reduced while fixed costs have not been reduced. You pay rent whether you are working or not. The second area of impact which we have seen is the drying up of cash. Companies do not have cash anymore. Very few people are coming [to do business]. Your employees need the cash, financiers who have provided you financing need the cash, you also need the cash. There is very little cash. This is causing a lot of challenges for a number of MSMEs. The next area is in terms of being forced to work in different ways. We are seeing a change in the kind of demands that consumers are putting on MSMEs. Consumers are requiring that MSMEs put in [place] safety measures. As an MSME, you have to invest in safety, address this and invest in personal protective equipment. This is affecting these businesses seriously. Many businesses are facing substantial losses at this time.

Q: Do you have any indicative numbers on where the greatest impact has been?

For the tourism sector for instance, the impact has been 100%. The sector is totally closed down. There are probably 30,000 employees that are home. In the export sector, they are also reducing staff significantly. In manufacturing, they are doing some minimal work, but it is impossible for them to do what they were doing before. Many are reducing staff counts by about 30% in the manufacturing sector alone. In trade, many are not working. These are all jobs that have been lost.

Q: What plans for advocacy does PSFU have in mind to support SMEs?

From the perspective of advocacy to ensure MSMEs are supported, we have been engaging with the government over the last few months and highlighted to them a number of things that they can do. The first is in dealing with issues of liquidity. We have proposed that the government should pay all people who have supplied it goods quickly. There is an issue in the government of sometimes purchasing goods but not paying quickly. We have asked that they make these payments. We supported MSMEs and requested that they submit to us all of their claims. By April 20, we submitted a list with over 1 trillion shillings in terms of unpaid bills, and the government agreed to make these payments. I will also recommend that the businesses, the MSMEs, pay their suppliers if they have some cash. Pay your supplier, pay your employees. That also helps. The second thing that we’ve asked the government to help with is to see that companies’ tax refunds are released. The Uganda Revenue Authority has provided guidance on how to make these refunds much quicker, so they have responded. We have also requested that the financial sector relax the loan repayment requirements with some of their borrowers. The Bank of Uganda has given very good guidance on this in terms of suspending payments, moratoriums on payment of interest, restructuring loans. All those have actually been done, and the government and Bank of Uganda have advised the government that for some requirements that were previously needed before a loan could be restructured, they be waived – even if a loan is in arrears, present yourself to the bank, and the bank will be able to advise you and you can then move forward. The third area we have done on advocacy is to advise the government not to consider increasing taxes. We also wanted some to be reduced so that businesses have some more liquidity to work with. We have advised incentives that were done a few years ago, such as investment incentives, be reinstated so that some companies with extra cash can invest. The fourth area where we have asked government for support is in terms of building alternative markets and access to those markets. We know that today markets in Europe, Asia, and the Middle East are facing challenges because of this virus. We need to find alternative markets, or if not alternative markets, new consumers in these markets. We ask that they make sure consumers still have Uganda in their minds so that when the whole world opens again, they come back for tourism and they continue to buy goods from Uganda. We have also asked that government focus strongly on enterprise development. We need to ensure that we create and build enterprises that are sustainable. The biggest piece of that is providing financing that is affordable but also long term. We insisted that the Ugandan Development Bank be recapitalized so that it is ready to lend out to the MSMEs, to the private sector. When there is affordable finance, we will see investments into MSMEs and MSMEs being more resilient than they are today. We also know that business development services are so critical, so crucial. MSMEs sometimes fail to pay their loans purely because of the additional things that they should have done but do not do. This includes financial literacy and proper preparation of a loan proposal. Business development services is a very important thing that we have asked government to pay attention to so that when businesses come back and access financing, they are able to be resilient and are not affected by things like this virus. We have also requested that the government look at insolvency law, not only in terms of how to organize it and prepare a company that has failed, but it should now have a component of reinvestment. Meaning if a company is insolvent its commitments, don’t just move to sell it. Allow and rehabilitate it. You might need to reinvest in it – reinvest in it and bring it back. In many countries, this facility exists, and they are saving their companies. This is how you have companies that have been in existence for hundreds of years. As we engage government and tell us what they should help us with, we also have our own responsibilities, our own tasks to do. We have learned that we have to have savings. We have to look very closely at what we are spending. We must reduce and optimize costs so that we save for a rainy day. Try to learn how to work with insurance services, understand social safety nets. How can we engage with them? Are they being run properly? If you have an insurance policy, savings, a network of support systems, you are more likely to come back. The other thing that we have talked about very strongly is that government should look at alternative ways of accessing markets. For instance, there are markets for exports in Europe and North America for which we do not have cargo transport capability. We also have to look at how to trade in other markets for Uganda where there are concerns about not being paid. The government needs to support us in trading in some of these markets. We need things like insurance coverage for this. We have connected very well with the government and are quite happy that we are all aiming towards improving and saving our economy.

Q: Will these proposals be adopted by government?

As you can see, a number of these proposals are already being adopted. On the banking side, you can see things being done. The other day the President wrote about securing money to support production. You have seen URA helping the administrative procedures for tax refunds. In the [national] budget, no taxes are going to be increased. There were proposals for increasing taxes this year that are now not there. We will get some room to build ourselves back. The other proposals that we have made are under discussion, and the discussion is going very well. We are very optimistic that the suggestions that we have made are going to be implemented.

Q: What solutions does PSFU have towards training entrepreneurs on digital trading and working remotely?

It is very clear that we need to enhance digital skills everywhere. As PSFU, what we are doing to enhance digital skills is to propose from the policy perspective what things should be done so that internet and digitization is available in the country. We are happy that infrastructure has been put in place and many companies are working to provide this service. There is a component that is a bit of an issue at the moment – that the quality needs to be improved by the service provider. We are encouraging as much as possible those MSMEs that are operating in the digital space to innovate, have new products that companies can use to reach markets. You need to be able to supply your consumers using different approaches, digital being one of them. We are supporting MSMEs involved in e-commerce applications. We are helping them with publicity, with policy support, and have products at PSFU to improve capabilities of employees as they work. If you are an MSME trading today, you need to include a digital delivery channel in your supply chain. If you do not add digital, you will have a greater challenge for yourself. Have digital approaches to reaching your customers.

Q: How can someone access PSFU training?

Today, we ask companies that would like to participate in our skills program, we publish a call for proposals. When a proposal comes out, someone applies to receive grants so that they can be in a position to upskill your staff. We are talking to development partners to increase the tools we have to support MSMEs. Look out for our call for proposals and please participate.

Q: What is PSFU doing in regard to the issue of tenancy for entrepreneurs in huge malls in Kampala and rent?

If tenants are not working, it is unlikely that they will find money to pay landlords. But landlords have also raised the issue that these malls and buildings are being funded by financial institutions. The financial institutions have provided relief but still need to be paid these installments. We are working to try and find a way through which tenants and landlords can find a way to come to an agreement. We have also asked the government to wave some taxes during this time. We are encouraging the engagement between ourselves, the tenants, landlords, and the government so that we have an amicable solution for the issue of rent due during COVID-19. We also encourage landlords to support and help your tenants to rebuild their businesses. Let’s find a brotherly approach, ensuring we support each other. Tenants, please also do your part, keep your word. Do what it takes to deliver on your word.


Message from Anne Juuko, Chief Executive, Stanbic Bank Uganda

The Small and Medium Enterprise (SME) sector remains the engine of growth for economic development, innovation and wealth creation.

- Anne Juuko
Chief Executive, Stanbic Bank Uganda

Empowering Uganda’s SME’s – The engine for growth

Message from Anne Juuko – Chief Executive, Stanbic Bank Uganda

Amongst all the sectors in Uganda, the Small and Medium Enterprise (SME) sector remains the engine of growth for economic development, innovation and wealth creation. In recent reports by the Uganda Investment Authority, SMEs are spread across all sectors with 49% in the service sector, 33% in the commerce and trade, 10% in manufacturing and 8% in other fields.

An amazing fact is that over 2.5 million people are employed by SMEs in Uganda. They account for approximately 90% of the entire private sector, generating over 80% of manufactured output that contributes 20% of the gross domestic product (GDP).
However, despite this significant contribution to GDP, SMEs remain constrained by lack of financing, skills, business records, poor corporate governance, limited ability to adhere to terms and conditions of business contracts, and fierce local and international competition. These limitations lead to the high mortality rate of SMEs and limited growth for those that survive.
With that in mind, Stanbic Bank has been deliberate in its efforts to support the SME’s sector. We continue to put in place key interventions through collaboration with key partners to enable sustainable SME growth and longevity.

Stanbic’s support in the wake of COVID 19
The world today is facing a wave of uncertainty and a tough business climate brought about by the Corona Virus pandemic COVID19. As a financial institution at the heart of the economy, we feel these shocks and understand the impact the pandemic is causing not only to your day to day lives, but also your business operations. We are therefore proud to be a part of the COVID-19 Business Info  Hub, a one-stop-shop for all the information that you will need to be able to overcome these challenges and see how Stanbic can support you during this time.

SME loan holidays
Stanbic is offering relief programmes such as loan holiday packages for business and personal clients as measures against the economic impact caused by the COVID19 global pandemic.
We are encouraging all our SME customers whose incomes have been impacted as a result of COVID19 to apply for a payment holiday of up to 90 days based on their unique circumstances. We are encouraging our clients to reach out to our business bankers, relationship managers or contact our customer care centre.

Our Enterprise Banking solution has been uniquely tailored to serve the needs of SME clients in Uganda. We are embarking on a journey to broaden our operating model while building a digital bank for our SME clients. Enterprise Banking speaks to our clients’ real needs and ambitions to grow beyond being small or medium sized businesses.

Stanbic support to SME development
Uganda as nation cannot grow without growing the SME’s and supporting their growth and development is a priority for Stanbic Bank.
Stanbic established a Business Incubator in 2018, aimed to provide training and capacity development for SME’s in Uganda. The trainings are free charge for SME’s and more importantly – you do not have to be a Stanbic client to apply and participate.
We have also expanded this programme and successfully launched regional incubator centres in Hoima, Mbarara and Gulu in order to avail training and development opportunities to SME’s upcountry.

Stanbic digital banking platforms
Stanbic offers Digital solutions for business owners make it possible to bank remotely and our relationship managers are available via phone and email to assist wherever possible.

For SME Clients:
Enterprise Online: You can enjoy this free service to manage all your business needs on the go. For more information contact the team at enterprisedirectug@stanbic.com

Enterprise Direct: This a dedicated call centre, a call away to speak with a business banker for all your business needs. Call us on MTN- 0312 222 660 or Airtel -0200 546 600 or UTL-0417 266 600.
We remain committed to supporting all our clients during this time. Together let’s take action to ensure we keep each other safe and we shall do all we can to see your businesses thrive now and in the future.

Thank you.

Regards,

Anne Juuko

Chief Executive, Stanbic Bank Uganda.