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Enabling Agricultural Cooperatives through Public Policy and the State The Case of Uganda (Draft)
This paper analyses the role of public policy and the state in enabling cooperatives in Uganda, focusing on agriculture. Through a review of literature, analysis of primary and secondary data, the paper notes that the Ugandan government has since early 2000s facilitated the scaling up, conduct and integration of cooperatives in the development process through: incorporation of cooperatives’ relevance into relevant development plans, strategies and programs namely: Poverty Eradication Action Plan, and programs, Agriculture Development Strategy and Investment plan; and Prosperity for all program; Consultative formulation of a Cooperative Development policy, amendment of Cooperative laws and regulations; reform of warehouse receipt system and commodity exchange; promotion of Area Cooperative Enterprises to provide agricultural extension services, input supply, produce marketing, savings and credit services; support to financial services cooperatives to increase capital provision; provision of agricultural extension services and value addition support; sensitization and promotional activities to popularize cooperatives; cooperatives capacity building focusing on leadership, business management and entrepreneurship, and integration of gender and environment concerns in cooperative development. Some institutional challenges which need to be addressed face government in fulfilling its policy commitments, including; inadequate financial and skilled human resources, and weak linkage between the government and cooperative movement.
Justine Nannyonjo is Head of the Real Sector Division, Research Department, Bank of Uganda (BOU), Kampala. Prior to that, she was Head of Economic Policy Research at the BOU. She is the author of several publications, including From Failed to Good State: A Case Study on Uganda.