By Ronald Musoke
In a move that perhaps recognizes the economic clout that Ugandans living and working abroad hold in Uganda’s economy today, Bank of Uganda together with the United Nations Development Programme (UNDP) recently initiated a feasibility study to find out if they (Ugandans) are willing to invest in the Ugandan Diaspora bond.
A Diaspora bond refers to a financial instrument that targets potential investors who have emigrated to other countries.
The survey is intended to understand the capacity and constraints of the Ugandan Diaspora to participate in national development through investing in international Diaspora bonds.
According to Jan Tibamwenda, the Bank of Uganda director of Communications, the study was launched in September and consultants are carrying out the survey to ascertain the necessary requirements and the feasibility of issuing the bonds.
“The viability, amount of money and any other related information shall be ascertained when the study is completed. After the study, necessary authority shall be sought from the relevant organs of Government to issue the Diaspora bond if it is found to be feasible,” Tibamwenda told The Independent in an e-mail.
At the most recent Ugandan Convention held in September in the UK, the Finance Minister, Maria Kiwanuka, noted that the Ugandan Diaspora remit up to US$ 2b annually and government wanted to channel some of that money into formal investment instead of consumption.