Agriculture is the predominant economic activity in rural areas which harbour about 76 percent of Uganda’s population. The sector employs about 70 percent of the working population and provides the first job for three-quarters of those aged between 15 and 24 years. The NDP III identifies agriculture as one of the key growth opportunities with the highest potential to generate employment and have positive multiplier effects on other sectors.
Human capital development is hinged on four aspects including education, health, water and environment, and social development. The four sectors epitomize the country’s focal areas of strategic investment through ensuring a healthy, educated and properly skilled population to drive the planned growth and transformation. In cognizance of the fundamental role human capital plays in the development process, the NDP III stipulates it as one of the priority areas that can be leveraged to attain socio-economic transformation.
The successor NDP III implementation builds on the priorities set in NDP II with adjustments to address emerging development bottlenecks. Infrastructure development aims to put in place a seamless, safe and inclusive infrastructure base capable of addressing socio-economic development. It also aims at creating connectivity and production through affordable and reliable energy and digital transformation in the country.
Mineral resources are critical natural resources in the industrial and economic development of a country. This is because they provide raw materials to the primary, secondary and tertiary sectors of the economy. Government has accordingly prioritized to sustainably develop Uganda’s mineral resources taking into account the spiral effect it has on industrial development and improving living standards of the population. Uganda is endowed with a host of natural resources, most of which are yet to be extensively exploited.
Uganda’s new strategic direction recognizes Tourism as one of the key growth opportunities to be enhanced alongside Agriculture, Minerals, Oil & Gas and Knowledge. Uganda’s tourism sector holds a huge potential for sustainable growth and development due to its diverse nature based, faith based, culture and heritage, and eco-tourism attractions. It remains one of the best performing sectors under service exports. In 2018 in particular, the sector accounted for 7.7 percent of the national GDP generating US$ 1.6 billion in forex earnings compared to US$ 1.45 billion in 2017.
The report indicates progress in Global electrification rate estimated at 89 percent. In Uganda, electrification is estimated at 24 percent meaning that for Uganda to be competitive economically, there is need for long term planning, stepping up private involvement in energy generation and providing adequate policy and fiscal incentives for deployment of new technologies such as solar, wind and nuclear energy to meet energy demands.
Road accidents in Uganda pose a serious policy issue. Statistically, of the 100 deaths that occur per day, 24 are due to road crashes. Government through ministry of works and transport came up with road safety policy and a host of frameworks and regulations to govern road use, however, due to several implementation challenges, the status quo still remains. Therefore, strict enforcement of the existing road regulation need to be strengthened as the report observes.
About 23 percent of households in Uganda have access to grid electricity. The successive NDPs have emphasized the scaling up of access to energy as a measure to drive growth of secondary towns, boost production and improve the wellbeing of households. This will then translate into desired socio-economic outcomes. The report makes mention of the need to scale up energy efficiencies to reduce the cost of power generation and enhancing energy security.