The Permanent Secretary in the Ministry of Finance, Planning and Economic Development, Ramadhan Ggoobi has said the government must rise to the challenge of undoing its old age problem of poor policy implementation.
He made the remarks as the ministry launched an economic growth forum book titled: “Beyond recovery: Policies towards resurgent growth in Uganda, outlining policy options to support the transition from pandemic-induced slowdown to robust economic growth.”
Ggoobi said: “policymakers must take note of proposals contained in this book it provides a roadmap to recovery.”
The book summarises and updates a series of presentations from the ministry’s annual economic growth forum, featuring chapters on trade, education, tourism, agriculture, and more.
“As you may be aware, Covid-19 pandemic and the global recession of 2020 brought Uganda’s previous four years of rapid growth to a sudden halt. There was a strain on the health system, households and businesses which were hurt as a result and hence the overall performance of the economy slowed down,”he said.
He explained that the country registered low exports receipts as the global economy slowed down, the tourism sector was affected due to the lockdowns and our remittances dwindled because Ugandans in the diaspora lost jobs.
Some studies that are quoted in the book show that poverty rate rose by 8% in 2020 alone and unemployment also shot up and SMEs were forced to either downsize or slowdown operations which in turn negatively affected worker’s wages.
“Government’s response to the challenges and opportunities described in this book forms a coherent and effective program that spurs a return to high and inclusive growth in a post pandemic era,” he said.
Ggoobi said the topics covered in this volume inform central elements of a post-recession reform agenda in managing the recovery and public investments, in promoting productivity of labour and capital, in developing exports, and in structural transformation.
The book’s editor, Commissioner for Macroeconomic Policy, Dr. Albert Musisi said the re-ignition of rapid and robust economic growth will require policymakers to address the constraints that existed prior to the Covid-19 crisis.