Fostering a sustainable agro-industrialisation agenda in Uganda
Economic Policy Research Centre, EPRC
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Uganda’s long-term goal, as outlined in the Vision 2040, is to industrialize and transform the structure of the economy. Given the dominance of agriculture as a source of livelihood, there is no doubt that Agro-industrialization (AGI) offers a great opportunity for the country to embark on its aspiration of transitioning into a modern industrial economy. In pursuit of this goal, the Ministry of Finance, Planning and Economic Development (MFPED) under the auspices of the Strategic Economic Policy and Management (STEPMAN) Forum set out in 2017 to provide evidence-based practical policy solutions to address the slowdown in performance of the Ugandan economy. The Forum accordingly tasked the Economic Policy Research Centre (EPRC) to take lead in conducting an in-depth policy oriented research to guide Uganda’s AGI agenda for the next five years. The product of that initiative is this report titled ‘Fostering a Sustainable Agro-Industrialization Agenda in Uganda’. This development prompted EPRC to devote most of its 2017/2018 research work plan to AGI activities culminating into production of policy notes on Transformative approach to Uganda’s export strategy and Agro-Industrialization for Inclusive Growth and Development’ which are a precursor to the final report. The actionable policy recommendations in the AGI Report also translated into Key Result Areas to guide Programme-Based Budgeting for Public Investment Management in Agro-Industry (PIMA) in FY 2019/2020 and the medium term. I am happy to report that MoFPED through the PIMA Taskforce commenced period engagements in August 2018 with relevant Ministries, Departments and Agencies (MDAs) and private sector players, to act on some of the ground-breaking recommendations in the AGI draft report, including a shift from a piecemeal to a program approach for the AGI agenda. An AGI Steering Committee chaired by the Permanent Secretary/ Secretary to Treasury has also been formed to provide effective coordination of the Program. I am therefore pleased to present to you this report which identifies the immense benefits of the agriculture sector linked to industry, including adoption of better production technologies, expanding the export and domestic revenue bases of the country and creating necessary preconditions for Uganda’s structural transformation into a high value- added manufacturing economy. I acknowledge the invaluable contribution from all stakeholders including EPRC researchers and the report drafting team, various organizations that shared their data, and the editorial team. I pledge on behalf of the ministry, that government will continue to implement the report recommendations while continuing the engagement with the various stakeholders.