In a compelling keynote address delivered at the 7th Economic Summit, PSST Ramathan Ggoobi shed light on Uganda’s economic trajectory and the government’s strategic initiatives to foster sustainable growth.
The summit, held under the theme “Harnessing current and emerging opportunities to consolidate economic recovery,” emphasized the importance of citizen participation and economic thinking in propelling a nation forward.
Thinking like economists: A key to national takeoff
Ggoobi articulated a fundamental principle, stating that countries take off when a significant majority of their citizens start thinking like economists. He outlined three essential concepts that underpin this economic mindset:
- Understanding trade-offs: Ggoobi emphasized that success comes from recognizing that everything is interconnected. Individuals and policymakers must develop the discipline of embracing trade-offs in decision-making, understanding that every action has consequences that can impact various facets of the economy.
- Incentives and danger: People, according to Ggoobi, respond primarily to incentives or threats. Recognizing and aligning actions with these motivators are crucial for steering economic behavior in the desired direction.
- Unintended consequences: Ggoobi cautioned that any action can lead to significant unintended consequences. Therefore, a thoughtful and holistic approach to decision-making is essential to minimize adverse outcomes.
Ggoobi highlighted the Ugandan government’s commitment to transforming challenges and uncertainties into opportunities for the benefit of its citizens. Key economic goals include maintaining macroeconomic stability and accelerating the monetization of the economy to achieve socio-economic transformation.
As of June 2023, Uganda’s GDP reached USD 50 billion, with projections indicating further expansion to USD 55 billion by June 2024.
Ggoobi proudly announced that inflation has been kept below the target of 5%, showcasing the government’s dedication to economic stability.
Impressive economic indicators
The economic indicators presented by Ggoobi reflected the resilience of Uganda’s economy:
- Exports of goods and services experienced a remarkable 49% growth rate, reaching USD 6.2 billion by September 2023.
- Tourism receipts rebounded to USD 1.07 billion (UGX 4 trillion), signaling a recovery in the hospitality sector.
- Remittances from Ugandans working abroad surged to USD 1.4 billion (UGX 5.2 trillion), showcasing increased financial inflows.
- Foreign Direct Investment (FDI) reached USD 2.8 billion (UGX 10.5 trillion), reflecting the growing confidence of international investors in Uganda’s economic prospects.
Ggoobi expressed optimism about Uganda evolving into a land of inexhaustible opportunities, leveraging its expanding economy to tap into the fast-growing regional market.
Stable exchange rates
In terms of currency stability, Ggoobi assured that the Ugandan Shilling (UGX) has remained relatively stable against the USD and other major currencies. This stability enhances investor confidence and supports sustainable economic growth.
In conclusion, PSST Ramathan Ggoobi’s expert insights paint a promising picture of Uganda’s economic future. The government’s strategic focus on stability, growth, and the harnessing of opportunities positions Uganda as a beacon of prosperity in the region.