Region: Eastern Africa
Population: 31,367,972 (July 2008 est.)
Surface area: 236,040 sq km
Currency: Ugandan shilling (UGX)
GDP per capita: Purchasing power parity US $900 (2007 est.)
The colonial boundaries created by Britain to delimit Uganda grouped together a wide range of ethnic groups with different political systems and cultures. These differences prevented the establishment of a working political community after independence was achieved in 1962. The dictatorial regime of Idi Amin (1971-79) was responsible for the deaths of some 300,000 opponents; guerrilla war and human rights abuses under Milton Obote (1980-85) claimed at least another 100,000 lives. The rule of Yoweri Museveni since 1986 has brought relative stability and economic growth to Uganda. During the 1990s, the government promulgated non-party presidential and legislative elections.
Economy – Overview:
Uganda has substantial natural resources, including fertile soils, regular rainfall, and sizable mineral deposits of copper, cobalt, gold, and other minerals. Agriculture is the most important sector of the economy, employing over 80% of the work force. Coffee accounts for the bulk of export revenues. Since 1986, the government - with the support of foreign countries and international agencies - has acted to rehabilitate and stabilize the economy by undertaking currency reform, raising producer prices on export crops, increasing prices of petroleum products, and improving civil service wages. The policy changes are especially aimed at dampening inflation and boosting production and export earnings. During 1990-2001, the economy turned in a solid performance based on continued investment in the rehabilitation of infrastructure, improved incentives for production and exports, reduced inflation, gradually improved domestic security, and the return of exiled Indian-Ugandan entrepreneurs. Growth continues to be solid, despite variability in the price of coffee, Uganda's principal export, and a consistent upturn in Uganda's export markets. In 2000, Uganda qualified for enhanced Highly Indebted Poor Countries (HIPC) debt relief worth $1.3 billion and Paris Club debt relief worth $145 million. These amounts combined with the original HIPC debt relief added up to about $2 billion.
Major Export Commodities: coffee, fish and fish products, tea, cotton, flowers, horticultural products; gold
Remittances: US $492 million (2006)
Human Development Index 2007/2008 ranking: 154 out of 177
Official Development Assistance and Major Development Partners: Net ODA in 2006 was US $938.19 million. Major development partners include the IDA, the African Development Fund, the United States, and the United Kingdom.
Total External Debt: US $1.498 billion (31 December 2007 est.)
United Nations membership date: 25 October 1962
New York Mission:
Permanent Mission of the Republic of Uganda to the United Nations,
336 East 45th Street, New York, N.Y. 10017
Telephone: 212-949-0110 / 0111 / 0112 / 0113
CIA World Factbook. Central Intelligence Agency. www.cia.gov
World Development Indicators. World Bank www.worldbank.org
Development, Recipient Aid Charts. Organization for Economic Co-operation and Development. www.oecd.org
Human Development Report 2007/2008.United Nations Development Programme. www.undp.org
Updated June 2008