Investment Licences In Uganda


According to the Investment Code Act 1991, Section 15 (1 and 2), Uganda Investment Authority (UIA) shall issue to the applicant an investment license which shall; Authorize the holder of a license to make all arrangements necessary for establishing the business enterprise described in the license. The Executive Director shall liaise with Government Ministries and departments, local authorities and other bodies as may be necessary in order to assist an investment license holder to comply with any formalities or requirements for obtaining any permission, authorizations, licenses, land and other requirements for implementing the business enterprise.

After a company has been incorporated/ registered (foreign company) in Uganda, it is eligible for an investment license provided its capital investment exceeds US$ 100,000 (Foreign firms) and US $ 50,000 (Local firms).

Application for an investment license is made to Uganda Investment Authority. After all required documentation is submitted along with the filled application form, the investment license is issued within one week.

Documentation required includes:

  1. Copy of the Certificate of Incorporation
  2. Copy of the Memorandum and Articles of Association
  3. A business plan
  4. Proof of financial ability to implement proposed project i.e. bank statement or letter project support form a bank.
  5. Proof of proposed physical location of project Secondary Licenses.

There are some sectors that require regulatory approvals from the relevant entities and these include: energy generation, mining, banking, air transport, pharmaceuticals production, education and health. In most cases, the regulatory approvals/permits/or licenses must be acquired before applying for the Investment License.

Benefits of an Investment License to the Holder
The benefits that accrue to the holder of an investment license include:

  1. Assistance in acquiring secondary licenses or approvals except in the following sectors, where a secondary license is mandatory i.e. mining, banking, drugs/ pharmaceutical, as well as the health and education services.
  2. Assistance in recommendations for various services e.g. loans from commercial banks, project development assistance from Development Partners, and introductions to Equity Funders etc.
  3. Assistance in recommendations and the follow up on the acquisition of work permits
  4. Assistance in access to land for investment. Industrial land can be allocated land in the operational and planned Industrial Parks and linkages to private land owners for purchase can be made.
  5. Possibility of Joint Venture Partnerships through the Match making of the licensed domestic investors with foreign inward missions, as well as the establishment of markets for licensed investors to supply raw material or finished products
  6. Participation in outward missions and organized international fora, at which licensed investors (domestic and foreign) get exposure, markets and machinery
  7. Timely access to the one stop centre for all necessary first hand information on any matters regarding their investment
  8. Provision of aftercare services in relation to specific challenges such as tax disagreements, closures due to non compliance, and support in negotiations with other parties e.g. Government Departments, equity funders, Community Based Organisations etc.
  9. Participation in free specialized training and workshops for especially domestic investors who need to build their capacity to measure up to best international practices in carrying out business with Transnational Corporations.

Benefits of an investment license to the Government

The licensing of investments in Uganda provides vital information for the Government in the following areas:

  1. The Monitoring of private sector inflows for purposes of formulating policies that will sustain and increase the current levels of economic growth and development
  2. The assessment of confidence levels of the private sector in the economy deduced from the trends of inflows
  3. The provision of timely and reliable data on foreign assets and liabilities to formulate policies that will guard Uganda’s economy from negative external effects experienced by down turns in the international economies. The data enables government to plan for mitigations against any such destabilizing effects.
  4. Management of the financial sector and planning for aversion of potential economic crises to foster stable growth. It is important in Uganda’s investment promotion, facilitation and retention efforts
  5. Better decision making and to meet international standards and codes in reporting
  6. Compilation of Uganda`s Balance of payments and International Investment Position statistics
  7. Assessment of how foreign investment complements local investment in form of feedback from the private sector, which is critical for policy fine tuning that benefits all stakeholders in the economy
  8. Assessment of the perceptions of the private sector investors on the investment climate in Uganda in order to evaluate the impact of the existing policies. This can be done from the results of the periodic private sector surveys carried out among licensed companies.


The absolute exemption on plant and machinery only applies to plant and machinery used in the agricultural sector. The plant and machinery items are specified under paragraph 1(s) of the second schedule to the VAT Act.

Other importers of plant and machinery benefit from VAT deferment provided under the statutory instruments provided in the VAT Act.

Other incentives under the Income Tax Act include; Income tax exemption on exporters of finished consumer and capital goods produced in Uganda as provided under Section 21(1)(y) of the Income tax Act; and Income tax exemption on income derived by the person carrying on agro-processing.

In addition, investors also benefit from industrial building deduction as per Section 29, and for those in agricultural sector Section 35 provides for more allowable expenditure.

Other reasons why you should consider investing in Uganda

  1. Uganda attained and has had political and social stability since 1986.
  2. Effective macro-economic policies that maintained economic growth at an average of 6.5% and enabled the country to withstand external economic shocks during the global economic downturn from 2008 to 2011 during which the economy still grew by 3%
  3. Natural resource rich country (Human and Minerals).
  4. Totally liberalised foreign exchange regime.
  5. Consistently improving infrastructures.
  6. Trainable and fast adaptable workforce from over 30 universities.
  7. Welcoming population.
  8. No labour tensions.
  9. Dedicated Commercial and Industrial courts for quick resolution of business disputes
  10. A unique multi climate varies from winter on the snow capped Mountain Rwenzori in the west, to the temperate highlands of Western Uganda and tropical forests of the Central region as well as the semi arid North Eastern Uganda.

Angualia Daniel
Managing Partner
M/s Angualia Busiku & Co. Advocates
Plot 3 Parliament Avenue, Raja Chambers
Mobile Telephone: +256774477656
(Trademarks, company and investment law)


According to the Investment Code Act 1991, Section 15 (1 and 2), Uganda Investment…

Registration of Non Governmental Organisations in Uganda

Registration of Non Governmental Organisations in Uganda

Applications are made to the National Bureau of Non Governmental Organisations.

This application form is addressed to the Secretary of the Bureau and contains the following;

  • Name of the Organization.
  • Country of origin.
  • Proposed physical address.
  • Particulars of any affiliated organization whether within or outside Uganda.
  • Objects of the organization.
  • Classes of persons to whom the organization is open.
  • Present number of members.
  • Tittles of officers of the organization.
  • Names, occupations and addresses of present or proposed officers of the organization.
  • Sources of funding.
  • Property (if any) and the manner in which it is held, acquired, or vested.
  • Bankers of the organization.
  • Any privileges, immunities or exemptions requested by the organization from government.
  • Names, signatures and passport size photographs of the promoters.
  • The form must be dated.

This form must be accompanied by

  1. A certificate of incorporation (this applies where the organization is an already legally registered entity e.g. a company limited by guarantee).
  2. A copy of the organization’s constitution.
  3. A specification of the area of intended operation of the organization i.e. the geographical area, field of operation e.g. health, education, gender and sexuality, etc
  4. A valid reservation of the organization’s name by the registrar of companies.
  5. A chart showing the organizational structure of the organization.
  6. A work plan and budget for the 1st year of operation.
  7. Payment receipts for registration fees.
  8. For local / indigenous organizations (NGOs wholly controlled by Ugandan citizens),they must additionally have ;
  • A written recommendation to the Bureau by two sureties.
  • A written recommendation by the Senior Assistant Secretary (chairperson) of the SNMC of the area where the organization intends to operate.
  • A written recommendation by the RDC.
  • Where the organization intends to operate through out Uganda, a written recommendation by at least two of the above.

Upon compliance with the above requirements, the Bureau then registers the Organization and is issued a certificate of registration as NGO with a registration Name, Number and date.

Once an organization is registered, it remains so registered unless its registration is cancelled, voluntary deregistered or if it is wound up.