By Richard Morgan
A Northern Ireland construction firm has been awarded a major UK government project in Africa.
Belfast-based Lagan will develop the Kampala Industrial Business Park in Uganda.
The announcement was made at the UK-Africa Investment Summit in London, which is being hosted by the prime minister.
The government of Uganda secured a £185m loan from the UK government.
Kevin Lagan’s group of companies will carry out the work in the country with staff, materials and equipment being sourced in Northern Ireland.
The government has said the development of the Kampala Industrial Business Park is expected to create employment opportunities for 200,000 people in Uganda.
The 900-hectare site was developed in the early 2000s as a central location for investors to locate factories, warehouses, and distribution centres.
The upgrade will see the construction of improved infrastructure including roads, water, electricity waste treatment facilities, sewerage and drainage networks and fibre optic networks.
Lagan chairman Kevin Lagan said his companies have been exploring projects which support growth nationally and internationally.
“We have a strong track record working in Africa and the upgrade of Kampala Industrial Business Park strengthens our footprint in the region,” he added,
“The Lagan team is delighted to play its part in this process, which not only supports our business, but is a welcome boost to the economies of both Northern Ireland and Uganda.”
The International Development Minister Andrew Stephenson visited the project last week.
“This announcement at the UK-Africa Investment Summit shows the UK government’s commitment to help ambitious companies in Northern Ireland like Lagan unlock export potential and boost their trading partnerships with African nations,” he said.