Uganda’s Exports Grow By 8.7% In Month As Country Sells More Coffee

Uganda has registered an 8.7% growth in exports in one month mainly driven by an increased volume of coffee being sold to various markets across the world.

A statement by Secretary to the Treasury, Ramathan Ggoobi, on Tuesday said Uganda earned $585.81m from the merchandise exported in May compared to $538.87m earned the previous month.

“The value of merchandise exported in May 2023 increased by 8.7%…mainly due to higher receipts from coffee. Export volumes of coffee increased to 453,169 (60kg bags) in May 2023 from 373,610 the previous month,” Ggoobi said.

The official said as a result, trade deficit with the rest of the world narrowed from $293.29m in May 2023 to $282.08m in May 2023.

The growth comes months after the government entrusted the Presidential Advisory Committee on Exports and Industrialisation (PACEID) with the task of improving the coffee value chain and marketing the produce abroad.

PACEID chairman Odrek Rwabwogo and team, therefore, embarked on a mission to promote Uganda’s coffee in various countries.

So far the team has traversed markets in the US, UK, Vietnam and are currently in the Belgrade where a trade centre will later this month be opened by President Yoweri Museveni.

PACEID has been tasked with improving Uganda’s foreign earnings from the current $6b to $12b and beyond from the prioritised 13 key products namely tourism, coffee, tea, fruits and vegetables, beef, dairy, grains, sugar, fish, banana flour, flowers, cement and steel.

“All are exports where Uganda has sufficient comparative advantage in target markets that if grown, sustainable industries and manufacturing structures can develop around each, creating employment and driving the national economy. These exports have been identified using existing export data,” PACEID adds.

Of the key products, Rwabwogo believes tourism and coffee possess the capacity to lead in earning foreign exchange.

“Tourism is a rife sector ready to be harvested. Our strategy to make Uganda’s exports earn up to $12b in the next five years can greatly be driven by tourism,” he said in a recent interview with local media.

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