Since 1963, the World Bank Group (WBG) has funded more than 100 development projects in Uganda with financing totaling over $8 billion, and complemented with analytical and advisory services. The WBG also helped to secure debt relief for Uganda. In July 2006, Uganda received a total of $3.764 billion in debt relief, combining International Development Association (IDA) debt relief provided under the Multilateral Debt Relief Initiative ($2.780 billion) and the IDA portion of debt relief already committed under the Heavily Indebted Poor Countries Initiative ($984 million). The WBG’s current strategy is outlined in the Country Partnership Strategy (CAS) FY11-15, which has four pillars. Notable results include:
Pillar I: Promote Inclusive and Sustainable Economic Growth
The periodic expenditure reviews (PER) have been the foundation for policy dialogue with the government on where to spend public resources, how to spend these resources, and monitoring spending for results. They became especially critical starting in the early 2000s as the government embarked on budget reforms both at central and local government levels. During the mid-2000s, the 2004 PER adopted an integrated approach to address budgetary and financial accountability challenges at all levels of the government. These integrated volumes highlighted the progress that had been achieved by Uganda in strengthening the public financial management (PFM) legal and regulatory framework, but also highlighted the remaining risks, related especially to enforcement of procurement and payroll rules and procedures and independent oversight. In 2007, the PER focused on securing fiscal policy for growth quantified the huge waste of public resources in the Public Sector (e.g. through absenteeism), and became the first of a programmed series.
To enhance the effectiveness of Uganda’s Public Investment Program (PIP), the Bank’s ‘Strengthening the Effectiveness of Public Investment in Uganda’ study of 2010 assisted the government to direct resources to those investments that provide the highest economic and social return, in light of the increasing public investments from the government’s own resources, development partners’ and from the anticipated oil revenues. The public investment management processes in place were found not to be adequate to secure value-for money. The report therefore showed how to enhance PIP by improving the different stages of the PIPs right from conception, quality proposals, budgeting, and all the way through implementation and evaluation.
Pillar II: Enhance Public Infrastructure
Through the East Africa Trade and Transport Facilitation Project (EATTFP), transit time through the Northern Corridor decreased from 15 days to five days for the Mombasa to Kampala route, and from 19 days to eight days for the Mombasa to Kigali route. The border-crossing time at Malaba/Busia also declined from 15 hours to two hours. The Road Sector and Institutional Support Project (RSISP) that financed three phases of the Road Development Program (RDP) contributed to establishing and upgrading a network of urban and rural roads and reducing average travel time and vehicle-operating costs. The RSISP also contributed to the establishment of the Uganda National Roads Authority in 2008.
The Energy for Rural Transformation Project (ERTP) has supported establishing an appropriate regulatory and institutional framework for the sector, as well as installing and commissioning 522 solar systems with a capacity of 372,000 watt-peak in health centers; 560 solar systems with a capacity of 823,000 watt-peak in rural post-primary schools; and twenty nine solar water-pumping systems with a capacity of 390,000 watt-peak. Another project, the Power Sector Development Operation Project (PSDO) has contributed significantly to improved energy supply and strengthened
Uganda’s capacity to manage reform, privatization and development in the power and petroleum sub sectors, while the Privatization and Utility Sector Reform Project (PUSRP) has supported an improved regulatory framework and investments in the distribution network. Through a partial risk guarantee (PRG) operation, support will be provided to small-scale renewable energy power projects sponsored by private developers. These small-scale power projects will supply electricity to the main grid and reduce the anticipated power shortages in the years leading to the commissioning of the planned large hydropower plants (Karuma and Isimba). In addition to generation, the WBG is also supporting strengthening and extension of transmission and distribution networks, leading to a reduction in distribution losses from 35% in 2005 to 23% in 2013.
Pillar III: Strengthen Human Capital Development
The Universal Primary Education launched in 1997, and later, the $33.5 million Millennium Science Initiative (MSI) project that closed in June 2013, funded research and facilitated cooperation between the private sector, universities and research organizations. Through the Poverty Reduction Support Credits (PRSCs), the WBG also provided support to the education sector reforms including the primary education curriculum review process and efforts focusing on improving the quality of education in addition to expanding coverage. The 2007 Education Public Expenditure Review (PER) highlighted inefficiencies in primary education such as teacher absenteeism, inefficient teacher deployment and underfunding of non-wage expenditures in public schools. Subsequently, the WBG initiated institutional support to the Directorate of Education Standards to strengthen teacher supervision systems through partnerships with the Ministry of Local Government. With IDA financing, a curriculum review for lower secondary education has been finalized. WBG support is also being developed in Business, Technical and Vocational Training (BTVET), through a skills development program aimed at creating employable skills and competencies relevant in the labor market and the oil sector.
The Northern Uganda Social Action Fund, a community-driven development project, started in 2003 and is now in its second phase. Under phase one, 47% (more than 3 million) of the population in northern Uganda, were provided access to improved social services. The second phase has focused on improving access of the population in Northern Uganda and the Karamoja region to income generating opportunities and basic socio-economic services.
Pillar IV: Improve Good Governance and Value for Money
Through the PRSCs, the Local Government Management Services Delivery Project, and the Uganda Public Service Performance Enhancement Project, the WBG has supported the government to implement key public financial and procurement management and institutional development reforms to enhance management of public resources. Further, through the Governance Partnership Facility (GPF) window, one grant has supported the development of corruption tracking indicators and production of annual reports on corruption trends in social sectors and a citizen’s engagement framework to increase role of non-state actors in monitoring corruption. Through GPF the WBG is also supporting a selection CSOs to monitor public contracts and ensure value for money.
Through the Kampala Institutional and Infrastructure Development Project (KIIDP), institutional efficiency has been registered by the Kampala Capital City Authority (KCCA) through reduction of overdue liabilities, increase in KCCA own source revenue and increased share of KCCA own source revenue spent on service delivery. KIIDP II will address the City’s investment bulk-log.
Last Updated: Oct 15, 2014