Uganda: Growth-cum-debt

5 min

Real GDP grew by +6.6% y/y in Q4 (Q2 of Uganda’s fiscal year). The main driver of this good figure is…base effects. Agricultural output was quite low one year ago as a result of drought and has recovered thereafter. As the recovery period is ending, the momentum should ease during the next quarters. Overall, growth is expected to reach +6% on average during the current fiscal year, strengthening from +4% last year and +2.3% two years ago. However, growth is forecast to moderate again to +4% next year. This boom-bust feature has led to fiscal easing as well as a deterioration of the current account deficit, projected at -7% of GDP during the next fiscal year. Public debt increased from 30.7% of GDP in 2014 to 40.5% in 2017 and is forecast to rise further to 43.5% in 2019. The import cover ratio has deteriorated slightly to 5 months from 6 months one year ago. Based on the current spending path (imports grew by +15% in 2017), debt and liquidity ratios should deteriorate further.