Government has signed a memorandum of Understanding with Tanzania to encourage importers of fuel use the southern corridor. Amelia Kyambadde, the minister of trade and industry, revealed that government is also providing an incentive rebate of 150 shillings per litre imported. At a dialogue this morning, Kyambadde said government has held talks with multi stakeholders and thereafter Cabinet agreed to negotiate with the Tanzanian government. This is meant to encourage importers to use the corridor that is 500 kilometers longer compared to the Mombasa Port. Kyambadde’s comments come just two days before the Kenyan elections are held on March 4th, Monday, next week. She adds that they are regulating export of essential commodities to ensure Ugandans are protected in the unlikely event that the Kenyan elections turn violent. She made assurance that President Yoweri Museveni as chair of the East African Community has been holding talks with various stakeholders including the Kenyan presidential candidates. Mary Karoro Okurut, at a press conference, says government is aware that because of the 2007 experience, when post-election violence in Kenya caused blockage of the main sea route to the coast, occasioning acute shortage of essential products, notably fuel, some Ugandans follow the Kenyan polls with unease. Just like Kyambadde, Karoro says government has refurbished the national oil reservoirs in Jinja and the facilities are ready to receive products. //Cue in: “In the unlikely… Cue out:…very peaceful election.”// Commissioner Rev. Justaf Tukwasibwe from the petroleum supply department ministry of energy denied claims that the Jinja reservoir, as we speak, does not have any fuel. He explained that the monitoring and enforcement of the ten day operation stock for oil companies is not necessarily for government but for the private sector as well. Rev. Tukwasibwe says government can only come in to restock if there is a very serious shortage in supply that is over ten days. However, before enforcement takes place, the environment must be safe and conducive for business. The Commissioner revealed that the company responsible is Hared petroleum importing company but he fell short on assuring Ugandans how much Uganda is importing and when the fuel is coming in. //Cue in: “Before you do… Cue out:…ten day requirement.”// Nevertheless Uganda keeps a reserve price and expects dealers to sell the imported products keeping in mind the landed price of products imported through either route. //Cue in: “We do keep… Cue out:…bringing that product.”// Commissioner Rev Tukwasibwe also adds that government has put in place bulk purchases in the open tender system and negotiated storage space for Uganda bound products in the Kenyan pipeline system to build on stock. He stated that this is why Ugandans did not experience a shortage of fuel between 6th to 14th February this year when there was no loading in Mombasa as the rehabilitation exercise was going on.