Tuesday, September 4, 2012
NRM'S DREAM BY 2040 CANNOT BE ACHIEVED UNDER MUSEVENI
Here is government’s plan to make you rich by 2040 Share Bookmark Print Email Rating Here is govt’s plan to make you rich by 2040 By MERCY NALUGO (email the author) Posted Tuesday, September 4 2012 at 01:00 In Summary New plan says Ugandans will hit middle-income status by 2017 but critics say it is unrealistic. Government has outlined the country’s strategic direction in a document criticised by MPs as setting overly ambitious growth targets and improved living conditions to be achieved by 2040. Themed “Accelerating Uganda’s development to greater prosperity,” Vision 2040 projects that Uganda will, by then, be transformed from a peasantry economy to a modern and prosperous country. A draft copy of the vision produced by the National Planning Authority,(NPA), a body mandated to coordinate, manage and evaluate frameworks, systems and strategies for cost-effective and participatory national development planning, envisages that the country will graduate into a middle class nation in the next five years. Per capita income (how much money is earned by each citizen annually) is expected to stand at about $9,500 (approximately Shs23.3 million) by 2040 from the current $506 (about Shs12.4 million). Some legislators, however, called the report “cosmetic” and queried the method used to arrive at the projected growth indicators. Going by the vision attributes of independence and sovereignity, democracy and the rule of law, stability and peace, Ugandans would enjoy high standards of living and a much higher life expectancy pushed from 51.5 years today to 85 years. Defending Vision 2040, which is expected for launch as Uganda marks 50 years of Independence in October, the junior minister for finance, Mr Matia Kasaija, told the joint Parliamentary committees on Budget and National Economy last week, the political leadership is committed to achieving this vision. Share This Story Related Stories Here is govt’s plan to make you rich by 2040 He said during the vision period, average real GDP growth rate will be over 8.2 per cent per annum translating into a total GDP of about $580.5 billion for a projected population of 61.3 million people. He said this will match the current level of development in other middle income countries like Malaysia, Mauritius, Hungary and Chile. “The aim of the national vision is to transform Uganda from a predominantly peasant and low income country to a competitive upper middle income country with per capita income of about $9,500,” said the NPA chairperson, Dr Kisamba Mugerwa. The implementation of the plan, according to the draft report will require a policy shift to a quasi-market approach, a mix of government investments and private sector-driven actions. The government would lay emphasis on harnessing opportunities in the oil and gas sector through the construction of a refinery and supporting the infrastructure, industrialisation, developing the tourism sector and commercialising agriculture, exploiting more minerals, ICT business ,utilising the abundant youthful labour force, among others. Uganda’s current labour force in Uganda stands at 13 million according to the Uganda Bureau of Statistics, but with spiraling unemployment rates among young Ugandans. Majority of the unemployed are youths and graduates. Uganda has commercially viable oil and gas deposits in the Albertine Graben. As of 2009, only 40 per cent of the Graben had been explored and a total of about 2.5billion barrels of oil equivalent discovered. “More commercially viable oil and gas deposits are expected to be discovered as explorations are being carried out in the Graben and other potential areas,” reads the report. The country’s economic performance since independence has been characteurised by relatively slow growth compared to some countries that were at the same level of development like South Korea and Malaysia. Uganda’s GDP Uganda’s GDP per capita increased from $63.8 in 1962 to $506 in 2010 compared to Korea’s which increased from $103 to $21,000 in the same period. In the report, NPA projects the percentage of population below the poverty line to reduce to 5 percent by 2040 from the current 24.5 while the infant mortality rate per 100 live births would be reduced from the current 63 to at least 4 by 2040.