Uganda says will take long to implement the East African Community policy which calls a total ban on the importation of secondhand clothes.
Trade minister Amelia Kyambadde told the media in Kampala after a meeting with the nation’s representatives at the East African Legislative Assembly (EALA) that the move to domesticate fabric will be a gradual process as the nation seeks to revive it’s defunct textile industry.
“Uganda has decided to go slow on the ban on used clothes. The ban on secondhand clothes will be a gradual process as Uganda develops her textile and leather industries.” she said
Kyambadde said that despite the regional parliament proposal to ban used clothes, the reality on the ground is that majority of the population relies on them as a means of livelihood and thus can not be wiped off the business industry.
“Secondhand clothes provide employment to many Ugandans. It is also affordable and readily available.” Kyambadde Observed.
She said Uganda has started on the program of clearing the cloths off the shelves by imposing an excise duty to gradually shift the population from the trade. Also, the National Textile Policy and the National Leather and Leather Products Policy which outline key interventions in the promotion of the two sub sectors is being implemented by the government with the view to promote and protect the local nascent industries from undue competition.
Currently, Uganda has only three textile industries including Southern Range Nyanza Ltd, Phenix Logistics (U) Ltd and Fine Spinners Ltd, who according to the Trade ministry statement, cannot address the demand if secondhand clothes were to be completely banned.
Credit: Daily Monitor