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Uganda Economy

    Economy—overview: Uganda has substantial natural resources, including fertile soils, regular rainfall, and sizable mineral deposits of copper and cobalt. Agriculture is the most important sector of the economy, employing over 80% of the work force. Coffee is the major export crop and accounts for the bulk of export revenues. Since 1986, the government—with the support of foreign countries and international agencies—has acted to rehabilitate and stabilize the economy by undertaking currency reform, raising producer prices on export crops, increasing prices of petroleum products, and improving civil service wages. The policy changes are especially aimed at dampening inflation and boosting production and export earnings. In 1990-98, the economy turned in a solid performance based on continued investment in the rehabilitation of infrastructure, improved incentives for production and exports, reduced inflation, gradually improved domestic security, and the return of exiled Indian-Ugandan entrepreneurs. Continuation of this performance, while possible, appears difficult because of Ugandan involvement in the war in the Democratic Republic of the Congo, growing corruption within the government, and slippage in the government's determination to press reforms.

    GDP: purchasing power parity—$22.7 billion (1998 est.)

    GDP—real growth rate: 5.5% (1998 est.)

    GDP—per capita: purchasing power parity—$1,020 (1998 est.)

    GDP—composition by sector:
    agriculture: 44%
    industry: 17%
    services: 39% (1997 est.)

    Population below poverty line: 55% (1993 est.)

    Household income or consumption by percentage share:
    lowest 10%: 3%
    highest 10%: 33.4% (1992)

    Inflation rate (consumer prices): 2.6% (1998)

    Labor force: 8.361 million (1993 est.)

    Labor force—by occupation: agriculture 86%, industry 4%, services 10% (1980 est.)

    Unemployment rate: NA%

    Budget:
    revenues: $869 million
    expenditures: $985 million, including capital expenditures of $69 million (FY95/96)

    Industries: sugar, brewing, tobacco, cotton textiles, cement

    Industrial production growth rate: 19.7% (FY95/96)

    Electricity—production: 787 million kWh (1996)

    Electricity—production by source:
    fossil fuel: 0.89%
    hydro: 99.11%
    nuclear: 0%
    other: 0% (1996)

    Electricity—consumption: 677 million kWh (1996)

    Electricity—exports: 110 million kWh (1996)

    Electricity—imports: 0 kWh (1996)

    Agriculture—products: coffee, tea, cotton, tobacco, cassava (tapioca), potatoes, corn, millet, pulses; beef, goat meat, milk, poultry

    Exports: $476 million (f.o.b., 1998)

    Exports—commodities: coffee 54%, gold, fish and fish products, cotton, tea, corn (1997)

    Exports—partners: Spain 14%, Germany 14%, Netherlands 10%, France 8%, Italy (1997)

    Imports: $1.4 billion (c.i.f., 1998)

    Imports—commodities: transportation equipment, petroleum, medical supplies, iron and steel (1996)

    Imports—partners: Kenya 31%, UK 12%, Japan 6%, India 6%, South Africa 5% (1997)

    Debt—external: $2.9 billion (1998 est.)

    Economic aid—recipient: $827.3 million (1993)

    Currency: 1 Ugandan shilling (USh) = 100 cents

    Exchange rates: Ugandan shillings (USh) per US$1—1,368.4 (December 1998), 1,240.2 (1998), 1,083.0 (1997), 1,046.1 (1996), 968.9 (1995), 979.4 (1994)

    Fiscal year: 1 July—30 June

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Revised 1-Mar-99
Copyright © 1999 Photius Coutsoukis (all rights reserved)