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Ugandan Government Pledges Robust Support for Exporters Amid Fiscal Challenges

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The Permanent Secretary and Secretary to the Treasury, Ramathan Ggoobi, underscored the Ugandan government’s dedication to bolstering exporters of goods and services.

Ggoobi’s statements were made during a post-budget dialogue for the fiscal year 2024/25, hosted by the Civil Society Budget Advocacy Group (CSBAG) alongside ACODE and other partners at the Golf Course Hotel in Kampala.

During his adress Ggoobi emphasized the government’s intention to create favorable conditions for producers and manufacturers aiming to access international markets.

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“Exports are vital for economic prosperity and growth, and we are committed to supporting those capable of producing and exporting,” he declared. “Economic advancement is driven by exports, and our government stands ready to assist those in the export sector.”

In alignment with the recently read 72.1 trillion Ugandan shillings budget for FY 2024/25, the government is prioritizing health, wealth creation initiatives, access to capital, and the expansion of women-owned enterprises. The support for exporters and large-scale commercial farmers is also a key focus..

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Despite the optimistic budget projections, there are concerns regarding Uganda’s growing debt. Julius Mukunda, Executive Director of CSBAG, called for more cautious borrowing practices, advocating for loans to 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 also 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, highlighting an average growth rate of 5.5% to 6%.

However, Bainomugisha 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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