Minister of Science, Technology and Innovation Dr. Monica Musenero on Wednesday visited the Kiira Vehicle Plant Site, which is being constructed in Jinja Industrial and Business Park.
The plant, which as of July was 85% complete, is scheduled to be operationalized by December 31, officials said in a statement.
UPDF through National Enterprise Corporation (NEC), and Technology Consults Ltd are constructing the Plant, which is expected to produce and deliver the much-needed buses for modernization of Uganda’s Mass Transit Systems.
Its construction commenced in February 2019.
Kiira Motors Corporation (KMC) is currently utilizing the facilities and resources at NEC's facility in Nakasongola, where it is building two Kayoola electric-powered buses and one Kayoola Diesel Coach. They are to be completed by October 2021.
The company is working with Tondeka Metro, RentCo Africa and Golden Dragon as the Technology Partner to produce 30,000 Buses at the factory being set up on 100 acres of land.
The buses will be sold regionally and 65% of parts and components are to be localized by 2030.
The factory will produce and deploy 1,030 buses by mid-2022, 50 of which will be electric.
“The initiative is aimed at Modernizing Public Transport in the Urban Centers in Uganda and beyond, while building the Indigenous Motor Vehicle Industry through Technology Transfer and Supply Chain Localization,” reads the statement.
The Mass Transit Bus System (MTBS) will operate in the Greater Kampala Metropolitan Area within the radius of 25-30km along gazette routes and is estimated to move approximately 600,000 people per day while adhering to the Ministry of Health guidelines on COVID-19 and 1,500,000 people per day on a business-as-usual scenario.
Payments for tickets will be made through an end-to-end cashless ticketing system integrated with Mobile Money (Airtel Money, MTN Mobile Money and Afrimoney), Visa, Mastercard and Union Pay.
The Mass Transit Bus System is expected to improve passenger boarding and alighting times and reduce overall waiting and travel times to between 30 minutes to one hour on each trip as compared to the current taxi system travel/waiting time of over 1.3 hours while also reducing annual expenditure off individual disposable incomes on transportation within GKMA by up to 80%.
There will be improved revenue collection for taxi operators at the first and last mile through the Tondeka Taxi Owners Feeder Road Scheme that will enable integration into the Tondeka Cashless Ticketing and Payment System for a seamless commuter experience.
Building the Indigenous Motor Vehicle Industry is projected to create over 100,000 jobs directly and indirectly in the medium term including but not limited to engineers, IT specialists, planners, welders, painters, designers, architects, lawyers, financial analysts, accountants, economists, logistics and supply chain practitioners, auditors, human resources personnel, sales executives, marketers, machine operators, drivers, stewards and cleaners.
The minister was received by KMC Executive Chairman Prof. Sandy Stevens Tickodri-Togboa, Managing Director NEC Lt. Gen. James Mugira, the chairman of Technology Consults Ltd and strategic private sector partners from the transport, energy, telecommunications, banking, insurance and finance sectors, including Tondeka Metro Co. Ltd, RentCo Africa, UBA Bank, Absa, DFCU Bank, Stanbic Bank, Mercantile Bank, TOTAL Uganda, VIVO Energy, MOGAS, Hardware World, Airtel, MTN among others.