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Tanzania vs. Uganda

Economy

TanzaniaUganda
Economy - overview

Tanzania has achieved high growth rates based on its vast natural resource wealth and tourism with GDP growth in 2009-17 averaging 6%-7% per year. Dar es Salaam used fiscal stimulus measures and easier monetary policies to lessen the impact of the global recession and in general, benefited from low oil prices. Tanzania has largely completed its transition to a market economy, though the government retains a presence in sectors such as telecommunications, banking, energy, and mining.

The economy depends on agriculture, which accounts for slightly less than one-quarter of GDP and employs about 65% of the work force, although gold production in recent years has increased to about 35% of exports. All land in Tanzania is owned by the government, which can lease land for up to 99 years. Proposed reforms to allow for land ownership, particularly foreign land ownership, remain unpopular.

The financial sector in Tanzania has expanded in recent years and foreign-owned banks account for about 48% of the banking industry's total assets. Competition among foreign commercial banks has resulted in significant improvements in the efficiency and quality of financial services, though interest rates are still relatively high, reflecting high fraud risk. Banking reforms have helped increase private-sector growth and investment.

The World Bank, the IMF, and bilateral donors have provided funds to rehabilitate Tanzania's aging infrastructure, including rail and port, which provide important trade links for inland countries. In 2013, Tanzania completed the world's largest Millennium Challenge Compact (MCC) grant, worth $698 million, but in late 2015, the MCC Board of Directors deferred a decision to renew Tanzania’s eligibility because of irregularities in voting in Zanzibar and concerns over the government's use of a controversial cybercrime bill.

The new government elected in 2015 has developed an ambitious development agenda focused on creating a better business environment through improved infrastructure, access to financing, and education progress, but implementing budgets remains challenging for the government. Recent policy moves by President MAGUFULI are aimed at protecting domestic industry and have caused concern among foreign investors.

Uganda has substantial natural resources, including fertile soils, regular rainfall, substantial reserves of recoverable oil, and small deposits of copper, gold, and other minerals. Agriculture is one of the most important sectors of the economy, employing 72% of the work force. The country’s export market suffered a major slump following the outbreak of conflict in South Sudan, but has recovered lately, largely due to record coffee harvests, which account for 16% of exports, and increasing gold exports, which account for 10% of exports. Uganda has a small industrial sector that is dependent on imported inputs such as refined oil and heavy equipment. Overall, productivity is hampered by a number of supply-side constraints, including insufficient infrastructure, lack of modern technology in agriculture, and corruption.

Uganda’s economic growth has slowed since 2016 as government spending and public debt has grown. Uganda’s budget is dominated by energy and road infrastructure spending, while Uganda relies on donor support for long-term drivers of growth, including agriculture, health, and education. The largest infrastructure projects are externally financed through concessional loans, but at inflated costs. As a result, debt servicing for these loans is expected to rise.

Oil revenues and taxes are expected to become a larger source of government funding as oil production starts in the next three to 10 years. Over the next three to five years, foreign investors are planning to invest $9 billion in production facilities projects, $4 billion in an export pipeline, as well as in a $2-3 billion refinery to produce petroleum products for the domestic and East African Community markets. Furthermore, the government is looking to build several hundred million dollars’ worth of highway projects to the oil region.

Uganda faces many economic challenges. Instability in South Sudan has led to a sharp increase in Sudanese refugees and is disrupting Uganda's main export market. Additional economic risks include: poor economic management, endemic corruption, and the government’s failure to invest adequately in the health, education, and economic opportunities for a burgeoning young population. Uganda has one of the lowest electrification rates in Africa - only 22% of Ugandans have access to electricity, dropping to 10% in rural areas.

GDP (purchasing power parity)
$162.5 billion (2017 est.)
$153.3 billion (2016 est.)
$143.3 billion (2015 est.)

note: data are in 2017 dollars

$89.19 billion (2017 est.)
$85.07 billion (2016 est.)
$83.14 billion (2015 est.)

note: data are in 2017 dollars

GDP - real growth rate
6.98% (2019 est.)
6.95% (2018 est.)
6.78% (2017 est.)
4.8% (2017 est.)
2.3% (2016 est.)
5.7% (2015 est.)
GDP - per capita (PPP)
$3,200 (2017 est.)
$3,100 (2016 est.)
$3,000 (2015 est.)

note: data are in 2017 dollars

$2,400 (2017 est.)
$2,300 (2016 est.)
$2,300 (2015 est.)

note: data are in 2017 dollars

GDP - composition by sector
agriculture: 23.4% (2017 est.)
industry: 28.6% (2017 est.)
services: 47.6% (2017 est.)
agriculture: 28.2% (2017 est.)
industry: 21.1% (2017 est.)
services: 50.7% (2017 est.)
Population below poverty line
22.8% (2015 est.)
21.4% (2017 est.)
Household income or consumption by percentage share
lowest 10%: 2.8%
highest 10%: 29.6% (2007)
lowest 10%: 2.4%
highest 10%: 36.1% (2009 est.)
Inflation rate (consumer prices)
5.3% (2017 est.)
5.2% (2016 est.)
5.6% (2017 est.)
5.5% (2016 est.)
Labor force
24.89 million (2017 est.)
15.84 million (2015 est.)
Labor force - by occupation
agriculture: 66.9%
industry: 6.4%
services: 26.6% (2014 est.)
agriculture: 71%
industry: 7%
services: 22% (2013 est.)
Unemployment rate
10.3% (2014 est.)
9.4% (2014 est.)
Distribution of family income - Gini index
37.6 (2007)
34.6 (2000)
39.5 (2013)
45.7 (2002)
Budget
revenues: 7.873 billion (2017 est.)
expenditures: 8.818 billion (2017 est.)
revenues: 3.848 billion (2017 est.)
expenditures: 4.928 billion (2017 est.)
Industries
agricultural processing (sugar, beer, cigarettes, sisal twine); mining (diamonds, gold, and iron), salt, soda ash; cement, oil refining, shoes, apparel, wood products, fertilizer
sugar processing, brewing, tobacco, cotton textiles; cement, steel production
Industrial production growth rate
12% (2017 est.)
4.4% (2017 est.)
Agriculture - products
coffee, sisal, tea, cotton, pyrethrum (insecticide made from chrysanthemums), cashew nuts, tobacco, cloves, corn, wheat, cassava (manioc, tapioca), bananas, fruits, vegetables; cattle, sheep, goats
coffee, tea, cotton, tobacco, cassava (manioc, tapioca), potatoes, corn, millet, pulses, cut flowers; beef, goat meat, milk, poultry, and fish
Exports
$4.971 billion (2017 est.)
$5.697 billion (2016 est.)
$3.339 billion (2017 est.)
$2.921 billion (2016 est.)
Exports - commodities
gold, coffee, cashew nuts, manufactures, cotton
coffee, fish and fish products, tea, cotton, flowers, horticultural products; gold
Exports - partners
India 21.8%, South Africa 17.9%, Kenya 8.8%, Switzerland 6.7%, Belgium 5.9%, Democratic Republic of the Congo 5.8%, China 4.8% (2017)
Kenya 17.7%, UAE 16.7%, Democratic Republic of the Congo 6.6%, Rwanda 6.1%, Italy 4.8% (2017)
Imports
$7.869 billion (2017 est.)
$8.464 billion (2016 est.)
$5.036 billion (2017 est.)
$4.424 billion (2016 est.)
Imports - commodities
consumer goods, machinery and transportation equipment, industrial raw materials, crude oil
capital equipment, vehicles, petroleum, medical supplies; cereals
Imports - partners
India 16.5%, China 15.8%, UAE 9.2%, Saudi Arabia 7.9%, South Africa 5.1%, Japan 4.9%, Switzerland 4.4% (2017)
China 17.4%, India 13.4%, UAE 12.2%, Kenya 7.9%, Japan 6.4%, Saudi Arabia 6.3%, Indonesia 4.4%, South Africa 4.1% (2017)
Debt - external
$17.66 billion (31 December 2017 est.)
$15.21 billion (31 December 2016 est.)
$10.8 billion (22 March 2018 est.)
$11.54 billion (31 December 2017 est.)
$6.241 billion (31 December 2016 est.)
Exchange rates
Tanzanian shillings (TZS) per US dollar -
2,243.8 (2017 est.)
2,177.1 (2016 est.)
2,177.1 (2015 est.)
1,989.7 (2014 est.)
1,654 (2013 est.)
Ugandan shillings (UGX) per US dollar -
3,695 (2017 est.)
3,420.1 (2016 est.)
3,420.1 (2015 est.)
3,234.1 (2014 est.)
2,599.8 (2013 est.)
Fiscal year
1 July - 30 June
1 July - 30 June
Public debt
37% of GDP (2017 est.)
38% of GDP (2016 est.)
40% of GDP (2017 est.)
37.4% of GDP (2016 est.)
Reserves of foreign exchange and gold
$5.301 billion (31 December 2017 est.)
$4.067 billion (31 December 2016 est.)

note: excludes gold

$3.654 billion (31 December 2017 est.)
$3.034 billion (31 December 2016 est.)

note: excludes gold

Current Account Balance
-$1.313 billion (2019 est.)
-$1.898 billion (2018 est.)
-$1.212 billion (2017 est.)
-$707 million (2016 est.)
GDP (official exchange rate)
$51.76 billion (2017 est.)
$26.62 billion (2017 est.)
Stock of direct foreign investment - at home

NA

$541 million (2017)

NA

Stock of direct foreign investment - abroad

NA

NA

Market value of publicly traded shares
$1.803 billion (31 December 2012 est.)
$1.539 billion (31 December 2011 est.)
$1.264 billion (31 December 2010 est.)
$7.294 billion (31 December 2012 est.)
$7.727 billion (31 December 2011 est.)
$1.788 billion (31 December 2011 est.)
Central bank discount rate
8.25% (31 December 2010)
3.7% (31 December 2009)
9% (February 2018)
9.5% (December 2017)
Commercial bank prime lending rate
17.62% (31 December 2017 est.)
15.96% (31 December 2016 est.)
21.28% (31 December 2017 est.)
23.89% (31 December 2016 est.)
Stock of domestic credit
$9.045 billion (31 December 2017 est.)
$9.616 billion (31 December 2016 est.)
$4.297 billion (31 December 2017 est.)
$3.989 billion (31 December 2016 est.)
Stock of narrow money
$5.002 billion (31 December 2017 est.)
$4.641 billion (31 December 2016 est.)
$2.519 billion (31 December 2017 est.)
$2.167 billion (31 December 2016 est.)
Stock of broad money
$5.002 billion (31 December 2017 est.)
$4.641 billion (31 December 2016 est.)
$2.519 billion (31 December 2017 est.)
$2.167 billion (31 December 2016 est.)
Taxes and other revenues
15.2% (of GDP) (2017 est.)
14.5% (of GDP) (2017 est.)
Budget surplus (+) or deficit (-)
-1.8% (of GDP) (2017 est.)
-4.1% (of GDP) (2017 est.)
Unemployment, youth ages 15-24
total: 3.9%
male: 3.1%
female: 4.6% (2014 est.)
total: 14.8%
male: 12.7%
female: 17.3% (2017 est.)
GDP - composition, by end use
household consumption: 62.4% (2017 est.)
government consumption: 12.5% (2017 est.)
investment in fixed capital: 36.1% (2017 est.)
investment in inventories: -8.7% (2017 est.)
exports of goods and services: 18.1% (2017 est.)
imports of goods and services: -20.5% (2017 est.)
household consumption: 74.3% (2017 est.)
government consumption: 8% (2017 est.)
investment in fixed capital: 23.9% (2017 est.)
investment in inventories: 0.3% (2017 est.)
exports of goods and services: 18.8% (2017 est.)
imports of goods and services: -25.1% (2017 est.)
Gross national saving
25% of GDP (2017 est.)
23.1% of GDP (2016 est.)
24.9% of GDP (2015 est.)
20.6% of GDP (2017 est.)
21.5% of GDP (2016 est.)
17.7% of GDP (2015 est.)

Source: CIA Factbook