President Yoweri Museveni has described Uganda and the European Union as partners with a lot to benefit from each other. Speaking in a meeting with the European Union delegation in Uganda led by the European Union (EU) Ambassador to Uganda, Attilio Pacifici, Museveni thanked the European Union countries for emphasising trade other than aid when dealing with Uganda, a move that has seen Uganda’s earnings from trade with EU triple the aid to Uganda in the past few years.
The European envoys that included the heads of missions of Belgium, France, Germany, Denmark, Spain, Ireland, Italy, Hungary, Iceland, Netherland, Poland, Austria and Sweden met the President at State House, Entebbe as part of the biannual Article 8 Political Dialogue with the EU in accordance with Article 8 of the Cotonou Partnership Agreement.
During the meeting which was also attended by other dignitaries including, among others, the Prime Minister Dr. Ruhakana Rugunda, the president said that the trade between the EU and the African continent as a whole is complementary as the two mutually benefit from such trade. He appealed to the envoys to attract more European companies to invest in Uganda and take advantage of the ready market in Uganda and Africa as a whole as well as the open tax-free and quarter free market of the USA and Europe that was also negotiated.
The president and his guests discussed matters refugees, political climate a head of the 2021 elections and Uganda's position on sexual minorities, to which the Head of State clarified and took a firm stand. “The different groups promoting homosexuality are the ones creating undue conflict between themselves and society through unnecessary provocation. In Africa, even heterosexual is confidential although it is normal. It is not good to impose on others your way of life and those groups need to understand that,” he said.
During the same meeting, issues related to the cooperation between the European Union and Uganda, the Great Lakes region and the African continent were discussed.
The envoys commended Museveni for the great leadership that he has offered Uganda that has seen the country achieve remarkable economic growth and enjoy stability. They also commended him for working for peace in the region especially for hosting the tripartite summit in Uganda aimed at ending the conflict in South Sudan.