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Government of Uganda Reaffirms Support for Exporters

 

The Permanent Secretary and Secretary to the Treasury, Ramathan Ggoobi, has promised Uganda’s commitment to supporting exporters of goods and services. His remarks were delivered at a post-budget dialogue for the fiscal year 2024/25, organized by the Civil Society Budget Advocacy Group (CSBAG) in collaboration with ACODE and other partners at the Golf Course Hotel in Kampala.

In his address, Ggoobi highlighted the government’s plan to create favorable conditions for producers and manufacturers seeking to access international markets. “Exports are vital for economic prosperity and growth, and we are committed to supporting those capable of producing and exporting,” he stated. “Economic advancement is driven by exports, and our government stands ready to assist those in the export sector.”

The recently announced 72.1 trillion Ugandan shillings budget for FY 2024/25 focuses on health, wealth creation initiatives, access to capital, and the expansion of women-owned enterprises. Support for exporters and large-scale commercial farmers is also a key priority.

Despite these optimistic projections, concerns about Uganda’s growing debt persist. Julius Mukunda, Executive Director of CSBAG, called for more prudent borrowing, suggesting loans should be directed primarily towards infrastructure projects. Mukunda also criticized the budget for not adequately addressing national challenges, instead catering to the preferences of certain political leaders. He urged citizens and civil society organizations to hold the government accountable and engage actively in the budgetary process.

In response, Ggoobi assured that borrowing would be strategic, focusing on significant infrastructure projects like the Standard Gauge Railway and new roads in tourist areas. He emphasized that borrowed funds would not be used frivolously.

Dr. Arthur Bainomugisha, Executive Director of ACODE, praised Uganda’s economic growth, noting an average growth rate of 5.5% to 6%. However, he also stressed the importance of addressing issues such as climate change, geopolitical tensions, debt servicing, and corruption to ensure the budget’s effectiveness and sustainability.

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