Uganda’s Agricultural Sector at Crossroads: Is it a myth or a reality?
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Uganda’s agricultural growth has stagnated at about 2 percent for almost two decades yet the sector employs about 70% of the working population and contributes 40 percent of export earnings. On the other hand, Uganda’s population growth rate remains very high, above 3 percent per annum, signaling the likelihood of food insecurity and increase in poverty incidence. It is thus clear that the current state of agriculture cannot support the country’s target of attaining the lower-middle income status by 2020. A number of policies, programs and interventions have been implemented with no success in transforming the sector. These include: Structural Adjustment Programmes, Economic Recovery Program, Poverty Action Eradication Plan, and Plan for Modernization of Agriculture, among others. Indeed, the sector is at crossroads because while it is clear of what needs to be done to transform the sector, the current institutional set up seems weak and uncoordinated to effectively implement the required transformative interventions. Approaches that enhance institutional coordination, promote agricultural research and strengthen extension service provision would aid in revamping agricultural performance.