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Appropriate skilling key to wealth creation

Appropriate skilling key to wealth creation

Uganda launches state of population report 2023: Emphasizes mindset change for wealth creation

Uganda has witnessed the launch of the State of Uganda’s Population Report 2023, a collaborative effort between United Nations Fund for Population (UNFPA) Uganda and the National Population Council (NPC) Uganda.

Under the theme, “Mindset Change for a Favorable Population Age Structure: A Prerequisite for Wealth Creation,” the report delves into Uganda’s demographic trends, current age structure, and the crucial role of mindset change in achieving economic prosperity.

Key demographic trends

Mr. Andrew Mukulu, in his keynote address, highlighted significant shifts in Uganda’s demographic landscape:

  • Fertility has seen a 25% decline from 6.9 to 5.2.
  • Wanted fertility dropped by 19%, from 5.3 to 4.3.
  • Teenage childbearing, after a reduction from 31% in 2001 to 25% in 2006, has stagnated.

Current age structure

Uganda boasts one of the world’s youngest populations, with about three-quarters aged 30 years and below. Youth, aged 18-30, constitute approximately 24% of the population as of the 2022 estimate. The report emphasizes the importance of addressing the needs and aspirations of this demographic group.

A youthful population structure, like Uganda’s, offers several advantages for development. These include the potential for a demographic dividend, increased innovation and entrepreneurship, higher economic productivity, a substantial consumer market, cultural dynamism, a dynamic labor force, social change, and human capital development.

However, to fully realize these benefits, policymakers must address specific challenges faced by the youth, such as education, employment, and healthcare needs.

Digital transformation and wealth creation

Chapter three of the report focuses on digital transformation and wealth creation. It explores the impact of Information and Communications Technology (ICT) on inclusion, especially for persons with disabilities.

However, it also acknowledges the challenges that digitalization poses, particularly in terms of excluding certain segments of the population from the benefits of the digital society.

Population projection for 2023: The projected population of Uganda in 2023 is 46.2 million, with females accounting for 51% and males 49%. The economically productive age group (15-64 years) constitutes 53%, while only 3% are aged 65 and above.

Mindset Change for Wealth Creation: Emphasis was put on the need for mindset change in various areas:

  1. Investment in education: Prioritize high-level education to develop a well-educated and skilled population.
  2. Investment in health: Nurture a healthy and productive labor force.
  3. Fiscal policies and governance reforms: Implement policies that support wealth creation.

Harnessing demographic dividend

The UNFPA Uganda Country Representative, Ms. Gift Malunga, acknowledged Uganda’s progress in fulfilling International Conference on Population and Development (ICPD25) commitments, citing improvements in maternal mortality, fertility rate, and contraceptive prevalence rate.

The primary strategy for harnessing the demographic dividend revolves around ensuring that adolescents are healthy, well-educated, and appropriately skilled.

“Robust statistics are indispensable for tracking progress on the implementation of the Sustainable Development Goals and harnessing the Demographic Dividend,” stated Gift Malunga.

In conclusion, the launch of the State of Uganda’s Population Report 2023 marks a crucial step in understanding and addressing the demographic dynamics of the country.

The report’s insights provide valuable information for policymakers, businesses, and development partners to align strategies with Uganda’s demographic realities and aspirations.

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