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Uganda -- Trade

Uganda's exports are dominated by agricultural products and its imports by manufactured goods, a structure established in the colonial era. By 1996, agricultural products accounted for 70% of exports and manufactured products accounted for 73% of imports.[1] Coffee accounts for over 50% of agricultural exports. The trade deficit was $609 million in 1996/97 and continues to grow partly as a result of liberalization of import regulations by the NRM. Exports only covered 47% of imports, down from 70% in 1987.

Uganda's major exports are coffee, tea, gold and gold compounds, fish and fish products, maize, tea, beans, and cotton to Europe, the United States, and Japan. Uganda's largest trading partner is Spain, who accounted for $188 million in trade in 1996.

Uganda imports petroleum and petroleum products, electrical machinery, transport equipment, non-electrical machinery, iron, steel, and manufactured goods from Kenya, the United Kingdom, India, Japan, Germany, France, South Africa, Hong Kong, Italy, and the United States.

Here are 1996 figures on Uganda's principal exports and imports:

Exported Item
  Million in US$ %of total
Coffee 396,206 59.6
Gold & gold compounds 18,403 7.4
Fish & fish products 39,056 5.9
Maize 17,823 2.7
Tea 17,059 2.6
Cotton 15,329 2.3
Imported Item
Petroleum & Machinery 91,792 13.4
Transport equipment 248,546 12.4
Iron & steel 38,469 6.5

Source: The Economist Intelligence Unit. 1998-1999. Country Profile, Uganda . London: The Unit.

1. The Economist Intelligence Unit. 1998-1999. Country Profile, Uganda. London: The Unit.

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