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24.11.2019 Business & Finance

Inside Uganda's first phone factory

By BBC
Inside Uganda's first phone factory
NOV 24, 2019 BUSINESS & FINANCE

Uganda has launched its first mobile phone assembly and manufacturing plant.

The site in Namanve, east of the capital Kampala, is run by Chinese firm ENGO Holdings and will produce SIMI-branded items.

The first phase will see the plant assemble up to 2,000 feature phones (so-called "dumbphones"), 1,500 smartphones and 800 laptops per day. At a later stage it will begin manufacturing.

Smartphones will retail at $54 (£42) and feature phones at $8.

Manufacturing and job creation are growing priorities for Uganda's government, and a significant amount of the investment comes from China.

Last year, Uganda imported goods worth $1bn from China, while its exports to China were worth only $32m, according to UN data.

China is also a leading lender to Uganda, and these loans mostly fund infrastructure projects such as major highways, hydropower dams, airports and the standard gauge railway which is to link to other East African nations.

Below are pictures from inside the factory

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