Performance of the agriculture sector has improved from 0.9 percent in 2010/11 to 3 percent in 2011/12. The increase is attributed to the performance of all sub sectors.
However, Minister Of Agriculture , Animal Industry And Fisheries , Tress Bucyanayandi said, “ we have not achieved the Comprehensive Africa Agriculture Development Programme(CAADP) 6 percent growth per annum target.”
This was at the first joint Agriculture Sector Annual Review (JASAR) held on 1st and 2nd Nov.
Tress launched the two day review dubbed “Towards actualizing the agricultural revolution in Uganda” and noted that there is still a huge potential to improve food security and farmers’ incomes.
Bognan Stefanescu, second secretary programme officer Rural development, spoke on behalf of the Agriculture Development Partners Group. He commended the ministry for organizing the event including field visits as an integral part of the review.
“It gave participants the opportunity to catch a glimpse at the reality of what is happening in the field, Bognan said, “… And to remind everyone that agriculture is not only paper work and figures, but real people, real results and most of all, real needs.”
He cited the launch of the Agriculture Technology and Agribusiness Advisory Services (ATAAS), operationalisation of the non- ATAAS Development Strategy Investment Plan (DSIP), appointment of new the new directors for National Agricultural Advisory Services (NAADS) as the sector’s achievements in the past twelve months. He said the new appointees should however bring new dynamism, work hard, accountability to achieve concrete and measurable targets.
However, he said the sector still faces challenges of inadequate budget allocation, incomplete reform of the ministry and a lenient regulatory environment.
“There is therefore a clear need to strengthen the universal enforcement of the public regulatory system. This would require increased involvement of the ministry of finance and economic development and the parliamentary Sessional Committee on Agriculture”
At the review, one businessman said, “Either Uganda grows with us, or we grow with Uganda,” he added, “But we will grow.”
Bognan added that helping farmers improve their productivity, supporting civil society and private sector will sustain agriculture.
The delegation of the European Union took over the leadership of the Agriculture Development Partners’ Group from World Bank this January. The group pledged to back the ministry through its higher operational efficiency and better results to earn the confidence of the decision makers and thus to convince them to invest more in the sector.