By Halima Athumani and Felix Nkambeh Tih
KAMPALA, Uganda (AA) - Turkish President Recep Tayyip Erdogan late Tuesday arrived in Uganda on a two-day official visit, where he is expected to meet with his counterpart Yoweri Museveni and other local officials.
Erdogan was welcomed at Entebbe International Airport by Sam Kutesa, Uganda’s foreign minister, and Daudi Migereko, minister of lands.
On Wednesday, President Museveni will host Erdogan at the State House in Entebbe, where both leaders will hold bilateral talks followed by a press conference.
He will also visit Makerere University, where he will receive an honorary degree.
The official visit is part of Erdogan’s four-day East Africa tour. He will visit Kenya on June 1-3.
Relations between Turkey and Uganda have since been developing steadily as a result of a series of exchange of visits.
The Turkish embassy in Kampala and the Ugandan embassy in Ankara opened in April 2010 and July 2013, respectively.
Museveni paid an official visit to Turkey in May 2010 at the invitation of then-President Abdullah Gul.
Turkey’s bilateral trade volume with Uganda reached nearly $29 million in 2015, with most -- about $22 million -- coming from Turkish exports. Turkey’s main export products are cereal grains, electronic equipment, and rubber.
There are around 20 Turkish companies in Uganda active in such sectors as dry food imports, ready-wear clothing, textiles, electronic cable marketing, restaurant management, and construction, with total investments of $150 million. Other dealings include greenhouse technology, a meat-processing plant, and large-scale farming, according to Turkey's Foreign Ministry.
The Presidency for Turks Abroad and Related Communities (YTB) also allocates scholarships for Uganda University.
The first leg of Erdogan’s Sub-Saharan African tour was in Senegal in February.
In April, he continued in West Africa with visits to Ivory Coast, Ghana, Nigeria, and Guinea.
During his latest visits to Africa, Erdogan vowed to boost Turkish-African relations.
Erdogan is accompanied by Turkish businessmen and many other Turkish officials.