By Kiyimba Bruno
The minister of Trade and Industry Hon Amelia Kyambadde has this morning clarified on the a question of banning alcohol producers who pack in sackets.
Speaking to the press this morning, the minister said that districts have been coming up with by laws concerning the alcohol in sackets, named “Buveera”.
“I know that government is going to experience reduction in taxes since its income is going to go down, but as government, we had to come up with a stand concerning this product” Amalia said.
A statement issued on Tuesday last week by the ministry of Trade, in part, read: “Government has given alcohol manufacturers up to September 30, 2017 as a deadline to stop the sale of alcohol packaged in sachets.”
This means from that date onward manufacturers will be required to pack alcohol in plastic or glass bottles.
Trade minister Amelia Kyambadde said this was part of the resolutions agreed on in a Kampala meeting on Tuesday between the ministry and members of the Uganda Alcohol Industry Association.
“On 22nd November, 2016, I had a dialogue with the members of Uganda Alcohol Industry Association, who are the major processors and distributors of alcohol in sachets.
“As much as Government recognizes the importance of the alcohol industry in employment creation and contribution of revenue; alcohol has been associated with excessive consumption and abuse by the population especially the youth.” Amalia said.
Amelia says that for manufacturers to turn from sackets to bottles, they had to be given ample time hence the deadline of September 30th 2017, which the government believes the manufacturers would have had enough time to transform their businesses.
She is also noted that there are so many alcohol processors who are not registered with the Uganda Alcohol Association and asked the Uganda alcohol association to come up with a memorandum with the government to certify only those without sackets.
The alcohol producers are also required to register with the Uganda national bureau of standards which then has to publicize a certification to the producers.
She commended the local authorities from the districts who took the initiative to ban “sackets” at the grassroots since that is where even those who pack from these products originate.