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Uganda’s export sector surges as exports reach $674.54 Million, a 93.0% increase

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Uganda’s export sector experienced a significant surge as the country’s exports reached $674.54 million in March 2023, marking a remarkable 93.0 percent increase compared to the previous month.

The Ministry of Finance, Planning, and Economic Development released a report on Monday, highlighting the substantial growth in export profits from mineral goods, tobacco, maize, and cotton throughout the month.

One notable area of growth was in the coffee industry, with coffee exports reaching $71.54 million in March, an 8.4 percent increase from February 2023.

Uganda's export sector surges as exports reach $674.54 Million, a 93.0% increase

This surge was attributed to exporters capitalizing on the rising international price of Robusta coffee, leading them to offload coffee from their warehouses for sale.

March 2023 also saw a significant increase in merchandise exports, rising by 85.4 percent from the previous year. This growth was primarily driven by higher export revenue from tobacco, maize, and mineral exports.

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Notably, Uganda’s largest export market remained the East African Community (EAC), accounting for 35.7 percent of all exports in March 2023. The country maintained a trade surplus of $15.9 million with the EAC, although it experienced an 84.4 percent decline compared to the previous month due to increased imports from neighboring countries.

In terms of imports, Uganda experienced a 41.6 percent growth in the value of merchandise imports, reaching $916.47 million in March 2023. Private sector imports of minerals, vegetables, drinks, fats and oils, and animal products played a significant role in driving this increase.

Comparing March 2022 to March 2023, the country witnessed a 39.6 percent growth in imports, primarily driven by higher import quantities of machinery, equipment, cars, and mineral materials.

Uganda's export sector surges as exports reach $674.54 Million, a 93.0% increase

Despite the overall growth in imports, Uganda managed to reduce its merchandise trade deficit. In March 2023, the trade deficit decreased to $241.93 million, a significant improvement compared to the previous year.

The recent surge in Uganda’s export sector reflects the country’s efforts to diversify its economy and capitalize on the global demand for its products. It also underscores the potential for further growth and economic development in the coming months.

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