NRM government inherited a dilapidated economy that had suffered from the Amin’s brought about by civil wars and political instability since 1970s. The country GDP declined further following the ruthless approach of President Idi Amin towards foreign investors. The economic polices ruined the economy further including the subsistence sector (Mamdani 1983) the economic war had far reaching impact that farmers halted producing cotton and coffee and international investors become indifferent as far as Uganda under Amin was concerned.
The implications of the economic was ushered in a decline in earnings by 14.8 percent 1978 and 1980 by 1979 after Amins over throw the nation GDP was at 80 percent of the 1970. The production output went down completely owing to the fact that industries lacked everything that could make production thrive for example spare parts, raw materials etc. The years 1981-1983 the economy resurrected a bit and registered a 17.3 growth rate from the agriculture fide leaving the industrial sector starved. With the renewed growth, the political crisis had reversed the growth rates to of 4.2 percent in 1984, 1.5 percent in 1985 and 2.3 percent in 1986.
One should note that coffee production was the dominating activity that fed the economy right from the British colonial rule. Any problem on the price of coffee at international level affected the GDP 1986 NRM policies.
Museveni government came with the zeal to reverse the economic stagnation of 1970 and 1980s. Museveni envisioned a national economy to be private oriented further than a socialist government controlled. All these policies were geared toward amelioration of the confidence of the private sector.
In 1987 the government took direct charge of the economy by owning a number of parastatals that were once private companies that had been abandoned by the former proprietors, government also took charge of marketing boards as a way to monitor sales and regulate the fluctuating prices of agricultural produces. Bank of Uganda and Uganda commercial bank. Government all took charge of controlling of imports and exports through licensing mechanism.
Through a rehabilitation and development plan in 1987 the plan registered an annual 5 percent growth rate; this was a modest recovery that saw the first phase in FY 1988 implementing twenty –six projects. This was a success due to improved security and private sector development. Through the devaluation and government expenditure had an impact, at least Uganda futures was a success.
Labour force, prior 1980s a great section of Ugandans worked outside the monetary economy owing to the dwindling and the value of salaries. For example in 1980s the average wages was at U$ 10 a month for a factory employee, U$ 20 lower civil servant and university lecturer U$ 40. With the new management under museveni rule. The highest paid civil servant moved to Ushs 7,000 a month 1988 (approximately U$ 117 at that exchange rate). The cross monthly pay was Ushs 3,127 (U$52) and the lowest paid civil servant received only US 1,175 (US $ 20).
To date the salary scale reveals a great improvement where a senior manager is under U1, middle manager U2-3, gradate and Diploma U4-5 and lower U6-U8. A teacher in salary U7 earns 280,000 while other public servants earn 200,000 (Vision September 2011).
As a result of visionary management the macro economic measures and reforms that Ugandan government adopted saw Uganda experiencing a growth rate that lifted Uganda from a ruined economy and by 1992/ poverty levels reduced from 56% to 31% in 2005/ 06.
The economy now is $14.28b and the GDP per capita is $ 482 giving an average GDP growth of 8.3% per annum.
- Incomes and production
NRM in order to address the critical area of agriculture and rural development restructured the NAADS programme to ensure they are inclined towards researched velvets of plants and better breeds of livestock of farmers. The outcomes have been that advisory information services have been provided. Professional advice and guidance on the management of their farming and agri-business operations is carried out by agricultural extension worker at district level
Technology has been developed and links with markets made. This has expanded farmers lively hood options and increases their incomes. Quality of services provided has been assured a technical audit has been undertaken and this has led to regulations and standards for services delivery. NAAD further has provided the change private sector institutions to be developed thus advisory service provider receive orientation and assistance. (NAAD Secretariat 2003).
- Oil and Gas.
The NRM government has transformed Uganda from a predominately peasantry community to an industrial sector government stated equipping members of staff in petroleum unit in disciplines of petroleum geology, geophysics, economics and law in 1996 the petroleum unit is now a fully-fledged petroleum exploration and production department. This came up with are the necessary data concerning geochemical mapping. The oil and Gas sector is likely to change the Uganda’s economy drastically by creating more jobs, investment opportunities. Infrastructure like refinery, pipelines and storage facilities, the oil sector has led to infrastructural development like road networks especially in rural areas around the Albertan Graben. Owning to corporate social responsibility, initiatives by oil companies have been in construction of schools, health centres and others income generating project. The income via taken and services provider and transaction in the oil and gas sector. All this is as result of the administration of NRM.
With the restoration of peace and the rule of law, Uganda once referred to as a pearl of Africa restored its glory as tourist look at it as the tourist destination in the region. It is branded as gifted nature. Support all activities meant for conservation of nature. The lonely planet voted Uganda the world’s top tourists destination. This was scored from Bwindi implementable national park. Bwindi was a victim of terrorist attacks but with the professional touch exhibited by the UPDF, amity was restored and Bwindi restored its glory. Uganda beat 9 other countries to the prize that saw it including Switzerland. All this was due to the famous mountain gorillas, the amazing chimpanzee tracking experience falls, bird species tree climbing lion and Mountain linking experience. The entire Tourist industry had collapsed following Amin dictatorship regime and the expulsion of the Asian community that scared most of the foreign investors and tourists for fear of their lives.
Under the NRM the banking sector has supported growth of businesses through increasing the levels of products and services offered an expanding the network. Several branches were opened to expand access to the banking system. This has yielded rapid expansion with financial stability leaving the ratio of non-performing loans at 3 percent as stipulated by international standards.
The amelioration of the economy saw the mushrooming retail banking because of the demand by the private sector for diversification of banking products from the sector. In this aspect the financial institutions Act 2004 to parliament allowed banks to explore into the untapped markets.
Rural financial services
Before NRM in 1986, the rural areas depended entirely on urban banks for financial services owing the rural financial services strategy increased coverage of banking services took place. A place like Luwero district has four banking institutions with some branches in the district. In additions, the government saw it prudent to facilitate the establishment and strengthening of financial infrastructure such as SACCOs and institutions dealing with micro-finance for purposes intermediation statistically over 1,060 sub countries have SACCOs that are registered with a population of one million members. To facilitate this, there is a generated amount of over 40 billion as share capital and over 50 billion as savings. There is formal banking system and the business community no longer moves with huge sums to the bank. This has been as a result of advancement in technology such as money transfer on time; ATM. THE modern technology has effectively expanded the financial service. These innovations have saved the business community to operate outside the formal banking at lower costs.
- Interest rate:
Criticisms have been expressed from different circles that saw an increase in the interest rate. The bank of Uganda has maintained a regulatory and supervisory role to ensure financial stability. The regulatory body has brought down the interest rate and the results have been reflected on treasury bills decline. Today in Uganda there is a stiff competition among financial institutions and this has boosted transparency through published bank rates and charges thus Macroeconomic stability. As regards capital markets, NRM policies of privatization of defunct public enterprises, this gave Ugandan the chance to own shares. Ugandans before NRM did not know the value of shares.
- Industrialization and value addition strategy
Uganda from time memorial has been throwing away jobs because our exports lack value addition. The business environment to flourish NRM saw it fit to ensure competitiveness of the Ugandan economy through value addition. All this has been through support and facilitation of Uganda industrial research institute. All efforts are reflected through developed technologies for various products such as soap, plants, banana stems etc. Makerere University today processes soft drinks and technology department have come up with home-made car. If such achievements could be appreciated and consolidated Uganda is a promising democracy.
- Infrastructure / energy
By the time the Owen falls dam was constructed, few Ugandans were using electricity. The NRM regime has seen an increase in the population 33 million, (2002 population census). Thus this had an implication to the energy consumption. The Bujaagali Hydropower of 250 megawatts is almost to completion. In addition, the feasibility study reveals that 700 mw Karuma and Isimba Hydro power 100 are all under the Pipeline thus the load shedding that has been a threat to our economy as investors shan our country owing to shortages of power. Sabotage had been the major obstacle by the seventh parliament but Museveni administration broke all odds to ensure that Bujagaali is commissioned. NRM policies have been some of the reasons why the policy has lived long. In 2009/10 FY several schemes in northern Uganda such as corner Kilak-Patongo, Adiang- Abim- Kiru was completed. Others include Kidongole- Bukedea- Mansanda Mbale, Bumbieze BUSHENYI etc.; such schemes have a direct link towards development as small scale industries spring up.
- Road transport
Though Uganda has not lint the regional standard as re gards road infrastructure, an effort is seen through the FY2010/11. New roads have been contracted and some upgraded and these include ; dokoro- hira road (60 4km), Kampala- Gayaza- Zirobwe- Wobulenzi (Phase 1 43km), Matugga Semutto- Kapeeka (41km), Kabaale- Kisoro- Bunagana/ Kyanika(98km), Busega- Mityana 57km (UNRA report). Over twelve roads up grading to tarmac have been ear marked and the work commenced, throughout the country and 16 roads have been completed. As regards bridges, the contraction of Aswa Bridge on Gulu- Kitgum road commenced and this followed rehabilitation of ten bridges in West Nile. Kampala city may re fl ect a different t picture, however, the national transport master plan reveals the commitment to improve the transport system m in greater Kampala. This follows the financial year where U&50 million were earmarked for road rehabilitation and improvement with the centre of Kampala in addition, shs 13 billion to city divisions for road maintenance (kcca report). All these achievements are attributed to the NRM despite the challenges from sabotage.
The sector has witnessed tremendous growth since the late 1990’s, following the liberalization of the telecommunication sector and the installation of a fully- fledged ministry. The yields from such growth in ICT have been a contributor to the country’s gross domestic product. In a globalized world the effective use of ICT has become a crucial issue in the rapid economic growth and business that has improved the lives of least developed states. In service sector ICT is played a pivotal role in executing government projects. It is an industry that has contributed to social- economic transformation of both the rural and urban population through small medium businesses such as cinema operations, sports betting, Telephone services etc. owing to this, the NRM government embanked on operationalization and commercialization of the fibre back bone and e-government infrastructure fibre up to the small areas in all districts, operationalize the migration of Analogue to Digital Television broadcasting. This programme is soon kicking off as different stake holders such as start times, have ushered in the digital migration. The government is working tirelessly to extend television and radio signal to all parts of the country.
Owing to the policies and regulators of environment ushered in by the NRM government by end of December 2011, a close to 16.5 million people in Uganda has access to personal telephone, over 1,000 public parts of the country. June 2011 registered the fixing of internet subscription up to 84,558, mobile broadband connection at an estimate of 850,200 connections. Today over 5 million internet users are scattered country wide. This is the vision of the leadership of the NRM.