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Uganda currently receives around US$ 1.7 billion per year in official development assistance (ODA) from foreign governments and ‘multilateral’ institutions—the World Bank, African Development Bank, European Union and UN agencies. In addition, some US$ 60 million comes into the country each year in ‘private’ aid from foundations and charitable organisations.
ODA represents approximately one tenth of Uganda’s Gross National Income (GNI), and one third of government revenues. Aid as a proportion of both GNI and government revenues is, however, declining as Uganda’s economy grows.
Most of this ‘official’ aid to Uganda—around three quarters—goes to fund specific projects agreed bilaterally between the donor agency and the government of Uganda. This includes both loan projects financed by the development banks and projects that are funded by grants. (See the links below for a breakdown of how the money is spent.)
The remaining ODA goes directly to the government of Uganda in ‘general budget support.’ This is supplied by a group of donors, including the World Bank, African Development Bank, European Union and several European countries. This money is not tied to specific projects, but nor is it entirely unconditional. The government is expected to comply with a matrix of targets and indicators, which is negotiated between the donors and the government in what is called a Joint Assessment Framework. These targets and indicators mainly relate to Uganda’s progress towards achieving the Millennium Development Goals.
Some indicators related to oil were included in the Joint Assessment Framework agreed for the fiscal year 2011-2012. The government was expected:
Several individual donors have also funded project-based work related to oil.
Notable among them is Norway—which, because of its prudent use of oil resources, is now by some measures the world’s most prosperous country. In addition to offering the government advice and funding various technical studies, Norway has supported capacity building of the energy ministry and Petroleum Exploration and Production Department.
The UK’s Department of International Development (DFID) and the International Monetary Fund have supported projects to develop the government’s capacity for revenue management, and some of this work is now acquiring a focus on oil. The UK has also provided support for the Kigumba Petroleum Training Institute.
In addition, the UK, Denmark, Sweden and Ireland have given funding support to international and Ugandan NGOs and civil society organisations working on oil-related issues. Support of this kind is increasingly channelled through a multi-donor funded Democratic Governance Fund.
Several private foundations (including the Ford Foundation, which supports this website) have funded, or are seeking to fund work in Uganda related to oil.
This section of the website will profile the oil-related programmes of both ‘official’ and ‘private’ aid donors. As with much of the site, this is a work in progress: the profiles will be added as we make time to compile them.
Organisation of Economic Cooperation and Development at-a-glance overview of aid flows to Uganda, including top ten donors and breakdown of aid by sector.
Visual snapshot of aid and domestic spending in Uganda by the transparency campaigning group, Publish What You Fund.