Funding Creative Economy: New Facility To Support Ugandans Launched

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As the world celebrates the International Year of the Creative Economy, MoTIV Uganda Ltd has launched an asset financing facility for Uganda’s creative industry.

The Tools to Create facility targets young women and men in creative enterprises looking to increase their production capacity, launch new product lines, invest in new technology and expand their distribution networks across the country.

While speaking at the launch of the facility, the Team Lead at MoTIV Japheth Kawanguzi noted that the facility is designed to provide financing for businesses in the creative industry to be able to restructure interrupted supply chains, increase production capacity, diversify offerings and increase market share.

“Uganda’s labour force is largely under the age of 30 accounting for almost 70% of Uganda’s population which in turn has led to a strain in job opportunities for the youth. In the midst of all this, the young generation brews with creativity which has inspired an investment in the acquisition of different skills that require tools to actually get work done.

“The ‘Tools to Create’ facility is meant to support young people to affordably improve their skills, plan and transition the acquired skills to tangible work which enables earning a living.” said Kawanguzi.

In 2019 at the 74th session of the UN General Assembly, 2021 was declared the International Year of Creative Economy for sustainable development to promote sustained and inclusive economic growth, foster innovation and provide opportunities, benefits and empowerment for all.

“Uganda has great potential in the creative industry and can be a pillar for our country’s socio-economic development. The COVID-19 pandemic has only highlighted the opportunities within the sector and the need for creative thinking, innovation and problem solving for our community’s’ most pressing challenges. The creative sector therefore provides an opportunity to stimulate diversification, support the burgeoning manufacturing and services sector, support entrepreneurship, and contribute to cultural diversity including the fast adoption in digital transformation.” Kawanguzi added.

According to the National Action plan on culture and creative industries by the Ministry of Gender and Social Development, Ugandan exports from the creatives market was approximately at $239m approximately sh427b  

“Street data” shows that an upcoming musician (1-3 years skin in the game) will earn between sh300,000 to sh1,5m, whereas a painter with the same years of experience will earn approximately sh500,000 to sh1m per painting.

The Tools to Create facility will be executed through three tracks including an academy that seeks to provide prior training for early-stage business before receiving the tools, cottage industry and those within the creative industry. The first cohort will benefit over 150 businesses countrywide.

The Mastercard Foundation Lead Micro, Small and Medium Enterprises (MSME), Arnold Byarugaba noted the need to industrialise creativity with the hope that young women and men undertake new industrial ventures for future transformation of our society.

“The creative sector is one of the fastest growing and innovative sectors. We need to be deliberate in supporting the youth to transform our socio-economic status by providing an enabling system that supports access to market, finance, protection of patent rights, access to networking and collaboration, governance on innovation and access to knowledge and training.” Byarugaba said.

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The PS Ministry of Gender, Labour and Social Development Mr. Aggrey Kibenge who officiated the event re-emphasized the need to equip the youth with skills to be able to use the tools provided through the facility.

“The Tools to Create facility presents a pathway to mitigate the estimated 64% of unemployed youth according to the Uganda Bureau of Statistics and with the second youngest population in the world accounting for 7 million plus out of a total population of 40 million, we have no choice but to advocate for increased skilling of our youth. It is of great advantage that one of the pathways to receive the tools is inclusive of an academy that provides early-stage businesses with skills before receiving the tools.”

He commended MoTIV for enabling an ecosystem through its marketplace and encouraged the youth to embrace and take advantage of the Tools to Create facility.

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