Cuba Seeks Support from Uganda’s Kiira Motors to Rescue Its Public Transport

The Cuban Ministry of Transport has formally written to Kiira Motors Corporation -KMC initiating a process that would see the Ugandan makers of modern electric vehicles help to create capacity to make such buses in Cuba.

Cuba has a serious problem of inadequate public transport and is looking at the creators of the Kayoola EVS which is set to revolutionize Kampala’s public transport, to support the process to provide modern, efficient and climate friendly buses to the island state.

The ambassador of Cuba to Uganda, Rwanda and Burundi Tania Perez Xique on Tuesday 8th November personally visited the KMC plant to follow up on the proposal and tour the premises currently being constructed by the UPDF’s National Enterprise Corporation –NEC. The plant is nearing completion and currently, KMC builds its buses in the military workshop at Nakasongola.

The KMC built buses are changing the face of public transport in Kampala, with two local companies deploying the ultra-modern Ugandan built buses. Tondeka’s bright Orange buses are plying the circular route of City Saquare – Nakawa – Ntinda – Wandegeya while Kalita’s white Kayoola EVs are running of the Northern Bypass between Namboole to Busega.

Responding to the ambassador’s presentation, KMC Chief Executive Officer Engineer Paul Isaac Musaasizi agreed to explore the possibility of the cooperation, the shape and structure it would take before subjecting to the relevant organs consideration. KMC is wholly owned by the government under Science, Technology and Innovation (96 percent) and Makerere University (4 Percent).

Sources that attended the meeting said the two sides hope to have come up with the framework structure to help create the capacity for e-mobility that Cuba so urgently needs by the end of this year. This would then be thoroughly examined and the presented for the necessary governmental approvals.

Musasizi assured the Cuban delegation that their journey to transiting to e-mobility would certainly be shorter and easier as they will have the benefit of the Ugandan experience. Uganda has spent about 12 years from the time the e-mobility innovations started at Makerere university to the present when electric buses designed and built by Ugandan engineers have finally been deployed for public transport in Kampala city. 

The KMC built buses are operated by Kalita and Tondeka transport companies. 

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