Expanding fiscal space for social protection: The case for adolescent-oriented services.
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Uganda has been affected by the COVID-19 pandemic, and the pandemicis likely to continue to impact residents in the short- and medium-term,especially children. To contain the spread of the virus, the Government of Uganda (GoU) instituted several measures, including lockdowns and school closures—all of which severely disrupted livelihoods. Projections indicate that economic growth slowed down to 3.2 per cent in FY 2019/20 from 6.8 per cent in FY 2018/19—due to loss of employment opportunities, disruptions to supply chains, social distancing SOPs—all of which will affect the ability to raise domestic revenues in the medium term. The pandemic poses severe threats to inclusive development and has the potential risk of widening inequality. In response to these challenges, social protection (SP) programmes can provide additional support to mitigate the impact of COVID-19 on vulnerable groups, and the long-term recovery of the economy through investments in the well-being of young people. However, broadening the scope of SP coverage will require expanding the fiscal space given the constrained fiscal environment in Uganda. There are important reasons for making a case for increased social protection spending in Uganda. Like other countries in sub-Saharan Africa (SSA), Uganda has traditionally allocated relatively meagre funding to SP. On average, SSA countries allocate 0.6 per cent of GDP to SP, and this level of spending is less than a quarter of the average spending globally of 2.6 per cent of GDP (OXFAM International (2020).
- Social Sciences