Early in the days of our childhood, we were told that agriculture is the backbone of our economy and as time goes, this came to a reality. No wonder the government commitment to supporting the sector has remained realistically prominent.
The sector forms approximately 32% of the Gross Domestic Product and without doubt, agricultural products contribute a large percentage of the country’s foreign exchange earnings.
Agriculture remains a critical source source of livelihoods to majority Ugandans who engages in primary production and related non-farm activities.
In 2021/2022 financial year, government allocated some Ugx500b to the sector and focused on the growth of industrialization in the sector and it remain prominent in the coming FY 2022/2023 budget.
This year’s budget looks at sustaining the resilience of the sector to foster development and modernization.
The Agro-industrialisation strategy will address low production and productivity of primary agriculture, poor post-harvest handling and storage, limited value addition and insufficient market access.
It will also permit adherence to food safety requirements and standards in export markets which is in line with the government drive to enhance socio-economic transformation in Uganda.
This will enable the population engaged in farm and non-farm rural economic activity to earn higher incomes and employment.
Government has further committed in the 2022/2023 budget to provide funds to private sector to invest in vital commodity agro-processing value chains.
President Yoweri Museveni has for long been promoting commercial agriculture and value addition which termed as critical not only for Uganda but Africa.
This is prominent in the Vision 2040 that emphasizes value addition to agricultural products as a critical necessity in the country’s transformation to a developed and prosperous nation within 30 years.
The government is also promoting irrigation and mechanized agricultural farming system to guarantee both quantity and quality of the products.
The agricultural sector has steadily grown in Uganda even in the past two years that saw the world go on a stand still due to Covid 19.
It has played a formidable role in terms of food security, employment, local revenue, poverty alleviation, foreign exchange source and overall growth of the economy.