By Charles Audouin
Photos = Korea International Cooperation Agency
The Korea International Cooperation Agency (KOICA) is promoting a project to develop youth entrepreneurs in Uganda as a means to raise farmer incomes and help young people start their own businesses in agriculture.
KOICA on Aug. 21 announced the opening of the Korea Agri-Business Innovation Center (K-ABIC) in the African nation’s capital of Kampala as part of its project to raise youth entrepreneurial capacity to develop Ugandan agriculture.
To run through 2027, the project was launched last year with a budget of USD 5 million (KRW 6.8 billion) to offer education entrepreneurship and value chains to 4,000 Ugandan youth at K-ABIC. One hundred outstanding teams will be selected to receive up to USD 10,000 (KRW 13 million) each in start-up funds.
After the program ends in 2027, KOICA predicted that the average income of participants will jump 40%.
Meanwhile, K-ABIC will form a partnership with the youth innovation hub of Makerere University and attend and promote the school’s youth expo next month.
KOICA will also form a collaborative system with the country’s zonal agricultural research and development institute, Uganda’s version of Korea’s agricultural research and extension services, to offer consulting on agriculture to youth living outside of the capital.
“For Uganda to escape poverty, its agricultural sector must be attached to the market economy,” country director Ahn Ji-hee of KOICA’s Uganda office said. “We wish to foster young farmers to lead them to set up successful start-ups that raise incomes.”