Uganda’s development journey has been guided by a deliberate and well-planned effort to transform it from a peasant to a modern, industrial and prosperous society. Since adopting the 2030 Agenda for Sustainable Development in 2015, Uganda has been steadfast in its efforts to realize the aspirations of her people. Since 2018, the economy registered strong recovery and was projected to grow at 6.0 percent in 2019/20, before the COVID 19 outbreak. Income per capita increased from USD 833 in 2016/17 to USD 891 in 2018/19, and Ugandans are living longer with an average life expectancy of 63.7 years. Gains have been registered in the education sector as manifested in improved literacy levels and increased enrollment at all levels.
Government recognises the need for high-quality and inclusive development planning to consolidate gains and advance achievement SDGs. The 3rd National Development Plan (2020/21-2024/25) underwent a wide consultative process and will be a vehicle for accelerating SDGs and Vision 2040. Using integrated SDG modeling approaches, the Government has fully mainstreamed the SDGs, identifying key accelerators based on their relative return on investment. In addition, Sectoral and Local Government plans and policies will also be enhanced to address inclusiveness, a key principle of the 2030 Agenda.
As Uganda advances the implementation of its plans, it is committed to ensure no one is left behind. Government has put in place laws and policies to support inclusion of vulnerable persons. For instance, the PFM Act (2017) ensures gender and equity responsive budgeting. The Government increased funding to livelihood and special grants for youth and women. The Social Assistance Grant for Empowerment program has improved social security and reduced vulnerabilities for older persons aged 65 years. Uganda continues to support over 1.4 million refugees through a globally acclaimed programme Refugee model.
However in this article, I would like to educate you on the 3rd National Development Plan (NDPIII) which is the third in a series of six NDPs that will guide the nation in delivering the aspirations articulated in Uganda Vision 2040. The NDPIII (2020/21 – 2024/25) is anchored on the progress made, challenges encountered and lessons learnt from previous planning and implementation of NDPI and NDPII. The NDPIII comes into effect at the time when the country and the World are battling the COVID-19 pandemic that has posed social and economic impacts. In light of this, the Plan defines the broad direction for the country and sets key objectives, interventions and targets for sustainable socioeconomic transformation of Uganda.
NDPIII PROGRAMMES: The Plan has identified eighteen (18) programmes that have been designed to deliver the required results and address the 13 bottlenecks adopted by the African Union. These programmes incorporate the country’s commitments to regional and international development frameworks and cross cutting issues. The corresponding human resource requirements for each programme have also been outlined.
- Agro-industrialization Programme: Aims to increase commercialization and competitiveness of agricultural production and agro processing. Key expected results include: increasing export value of selected agricultural commodities, increasing the agricultural sector growth rate, increasing labor productivity in the agro-industrial value chain, creating jobs in agro-industry, and increasing the proportion of households that are food secure.
- Mineral Development Programme: Aims to increase mineral exploitation and value addition in selected resources for quality and gainful jobs in industrialization. Key expected results include: reducing the volume and value of imported iron and steel and inorganic fertilizers; increasing the volume and value of refined gold exports and copper; increasing investment in the exploration and processing of selected minerals; and creating more jobs in the mining subsector.
- Sustainable Development of Petroleum Resources Programme: Aims to attain equitable value from the petroleum resources and spur economic development in a timely and sustainable manner. Key expected results include: reducing the volume and value of imported petroleum and petroleum products, increasing revenue from oil and gas sub-sector and its contribution to GDP as well as creating more employment opportunities for Ugandans along the petroleum value chain.
- Tourism Development Programme:Aims to increase Uganda’s attractiveness as a preferred tourist destination. Key expected results include; sustainably increasing tourism arrivals and revenues as well as employment in the tourism sector.
- Natural Resources, Environment, Climate Change, Land and Water Management Programme: Aims to stop, reduce and reverse environmental degradation and the adverse effects of climate change as well as improve utilization of natural resources for sustainable economic growth and livelihood security. Key expected results include: improved land use and management; increasing land area covered under forests and wetlands, increasing compliance of water permit holders with permit conditions and enhancing the accuracy of meteorological information.
- Private Sector Development Programme: Aims to increase competitiveness of the private sector to drive sustainable inclusive growth. Key expected results include: reduction of the informal sector, increase in non-commercial lending to the private sector in key growth sectors, increased value of public contracts and sub-contracts that are awarded to local firms, and increased volume of private sector investment in key growth areas.
- Manufacturing Programme: Aims to increase the product range and scale for import substitution and improved terms of trade. Key expected results include: increased share of manufactured exports in total exports, growth in the industrial sector contribution to GDP, and increased share of labour force employed in the industrial sector.
- Integrated Transport Infrastructure and Services Programme:Aims to have a seamless, safe, inclusive and sustainable multi-modal transport system. Key expected results include: reducing the average travel time; reducing freight transportation costs; increasing the stock of transport infrastructure; increasing average infrastructure life span and reducing fatality and causalities from transport accidents.
- Energy Development Programme: Aims to increase access to and consumption of clean energy. Key expected results include: increase in primary energy consumption; increase in the proportion of population accessing electricity; reduction in the share of biomass energy used for cooking; increase in transmission capacity; and enhanced grid reliability.
- Digital Transformation Programme: Aims to increase ICT penetration and use of ICT services for social and economic development. Key expected results include: increasing ICT penetration; reducing cost of ICT devices and services; creating more direct jobs in the sector; increasing ICT incubation; and increasing government services online.
- Sustainable Urbanization and Housing Programme: Aims to attain inclusive, productive and liveable urban areas for socio-economic transformation. Key expected results include: decreasing urban unemployment; reducing the housing deficit; enhanced economic infrastructure in urban areas; increasing efficiency in solid waste collection; and more coverage of urban green spaces.
- Human Capital Development Programme: Aims to increase productivity of the population for increased competitiveness and better quality of life for all. Key expected results include: increased proportion of labour force transiting to gainful employment; increased years of schooling; improved child and maternal outcomes; increased life expectancy; increased access to safe and clean water and sanitation; and increased access by population to social protection.
- Innovation, Technology Development and Transfer Programme: Aims to increase the application of appropriate technology in the production and service delivery processes through the development of a well-coordinated STI eco-system. Key expected results include: Increase the Global Innovation Index; Gross Expenditure on R&D and business enterprise sector spending on R&D and Increase the number of Intellectual Property Rights registered.
- Community Mobilization and Mindset Programme: Aims to empower families, communities and citizens to embrace national values and actively participate in sustainable development. Key expected results include: increased participation of families, communities and citizens in development initiatives; enhanced media coverage of national programmes; increased household savings; increased social cohesion and civic competence; and better uptake and/or utilisation of public services (education, health, child protection etc.) at the community and district level.
- Governance and Security Programme: Aims to improve adherence to the rule of law and capacity to contain prevailing and emerging security threats. Key expected results include: improvement in the corruption perception and democratic indices; increased case disposal rate; and increased percentage of districts with one stop frontline JLOS service points.
- Public Sector Transformation Programme: Aims to improve public sector response to the needs of the citizens and the private sector. Key expected results include: improvements in the indices of; government effectiveness, public service productivity, global competitiveness and corruption perception indices. In addition, there will be increased proportion of the population satisfied with public services.
- Regional Development Programme: Aims to accelerate equitable regional economic growth and development. Key expected results include reducing poverty in lagging sub-regions of: Karamoja, Bukedi, Bugisu, Busoga, West Nile, Acholi, Teso and Bunyoro.
- Development Plan Implementation Programme: Aims to increase the efficiency and effectiveness in the implementation of the Plan. Key expected results include: Increase level of Plan implementation, increased GDP growth rate, increased revenue, and improvements in alignment of plans and budgets.
The key achievements that have been registered over the last decade include:
- Sustainable peace, security and macro-economic stability continued to prevail providing the basic anchor for economic growth and development;
- The size of the economy has doubled from UGX64 trillion in FY 2010/11 to UGX128 trillion in FY2018/19 in nominal terms;
- GDP per capita has grown from USD 844 in FY2011/12 to USD 878 in FY 2018/19, despite the growth in population;
- Domestic revenue collection increased from UGX 5.02 Trillion in FY2010/11 to UGX 16.359 trillion in FY2018/19 in nominal terms;
- Total exports of goods and services in nominal terms grew from USD 3.83 billion in FY2010/11 to USD 5.3 billion in FY2017/18;
- Remittances increased from USD 819 million in FY2010/11 to over USD 1 billion in FY2017/18 in nominal terms;
- The total paved roads network as a percentage of total national roads more than doubled from 8 percent in 1986 to 21.1 percent (or 4,551 km) as of May 2018;
- Electricity generation capacity increased from 601MW in 2010 to 1839MW in 2020;
- Access to and utilization of education services significantly increased, including increased enrolment for UPE as well as Business, Technical and Vocational Training (BTVET);
- Access to and utilization of health services also significantly increased.
Costing and Financing of the Plan
The overall cost of financing all the NDPIII planned programme interventions over the 5-year period is estimated at around UGX411.681trillion (average 40.9 percent of GDP, annually) of which UGX276.878 trillion (average 27.5 percent of GDP, annually) is contribution by the Public(incl.off budget) while UGX134.803 trillion is private sector contribution (less recurrent private sector expenditure). This means that 67.3 percent of the total resources expected to finance the Plan will be from GoU consolidated budget while 32.7 percent will be from the private sector. Nevertheless, private contribution is significantly high if recurrent costs are included.
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