Value chains for agriculture exports in Uganda

Elizabeth Kyomugisha
ussp brief

The export sector of the Ugandan economy has recorded tremendous recent growth. Between 2000 and 2006, the value of exports climbed from US $401 million to US $962 million, with agricultural products accounting for 60 percent of this. The growth in agricultural exports is largely attributed to a series of institutional reforms designed to modernize the economy and increase productivity. The result of these reforms has been increased private investment and a reduced role for direct government interventions in the agricultural export sector. However, some gaps remain that reduce the efficiency of the markets. Ugandan farmers continue to have limited access to markets in developed economies. Moreover, the evolving structure of export value chains globally has resulted in Ugandan smallholders, in particular, facing increased competition from high quality producers elsewhere. Value chain analysis offers insight into the operations of specific marketing channels by assessing the growth potential for particular export commodities. This brief examines several Ugandan agricultural export value chains to identify key gaps or bottlenecks in these chains.