UNCDF in Uganda

UNCDF in Uganda

The Challenge

The Republic of Uganda has been sapped by a long-standing conflict, pitting rebels and the government and causing widespread insecurity in the north, as well as in neighboring countries. Although, it is relatively peaceful today, Uganda continues to face a slow economic growth, with high rates of youth unemployment and very low incomes in rural households. Weak governance capacity at the local level, and a poor investment climate are adding to Uganda's challenges.

How We Are Helping?

UNCDF supports Uganda by facilitating the creation of functional planning and financial systems for sustainable and inclusive local development. Using the approaches developed during the District Development Programme, jointly supported by UNCDF, UNDP and the Government of Uganda in 2008-2012, UNCDF is engaged with the local governments in the Karamoja region to strengthen the capacity of local authorities, to promote economic development, and to coordinate the activities of service providers. The project is also working to strengthen the local business environment through targeted investments in economic infrastructure and support catalytic investments to revitalize the local economy. As part of its Global Local Finance Initiative aimed at unlocking national financial markets for sustainable and inclusive local development, UNCDF is supporting the development of a major catalytic project consisting of a dairy processing facility in Northern Uganda worth about US$12 million.

Increasing access to energy is critical for sustainable development. UNCDF, through its global CleanStart programme, plans to invest US$1.3 million (secured funding) over a period of four years (2013-2017) to develop replicable business models for scaling up microfinance for cleaner and more efficient forms of energy for poor people. By the end of the programme, more than 40,000 low-income households and micro-entrepreneurs in Uganda will have access to modern energy. CleanStart will be anchored in the Ministry of Energy and Mineral Development (MEMD) which is mandated to lead all energy programmes in Uganda.

UNCDF is also working to strengthen the capacity of local government institutions and civil society in planning and budgeting taking into account gender issues.

Implementation is subject to the agreement with the Government of Uganda. UNCDF is also in the process of implementing two regional programs: Youthstart, which aims to improve access to financial services for youth and the International Joint Training program (international ICLD-UNCDF), which aims to strengthen capacity of local government to support local development, poverty reduction and the MDGs.

In Detail

Project

Youthstart

GoalTo increase access of Youth to financial services.
How
  • Providing funds and training in youth microfinance to Financial Service Providers.
Period2010-2014
PartnersUNCDF, Mastercard Foundation.
Total project cost and UNCDF contributionUSD 1,468,450
-
Progress
Budget
Results (including scaling and policy impact)
Project

International Joint Training Programme to Strengthen Local Government in Support of Local Development in Southern and Eastern Africa

GoalTo support sustained capacity improvement for local governments.
How
  • Providing training and mentoring to individuals and institutions.
Period2011 – 2014
PartnersUNCDF, Swedish International Center for Local Democracy (ICLD)
Total project cost and UNCDF contributionUSD 1,970,130
USD 200,000
Progress
Budget
Results (including scaling and policy impact)
Project

Local Finance Initiative (LFI)

GoalTo enable and promote inclusive and sustainable local economic development (LED) and private sector development (PSD)
How
  • By strengthening domestic finance in local economies through both traditional basic infrastructure and industrial infrastructure projects such as energy, transport, warehouses, industrial pools, logistic platforms, food processing plants, etc.;
  • By developing capacities through training of local Technical Support Providers, national and local government officials, bank officers, and project sponsors; and
  • By providing enabling-information resources and scalable communication and management platforms using basic on-line technologies.
Period2014-2018
PartnersUNCDF, GlobalDF, SIDA, SDC
Total project cost and UNCDF contribution$33,250,645
$5,150,000
Progress
Budget
Results (including scaling and policy impact)
Project

Mobile Money for the Poor 

GoalTo demonstrate how the correct mix of technical, financial, and policy support can assist in scaling up sustainable branchless and mobile financial services that reach the poor in very low-income countries.
How
  • Providing financial and technical support to service providers and financial service agents;
  • Supporting market and client research to develop products and services that reach low-income and rural households;
  • Bringing large scale users into the branchless and mobile financial services system;
  • Assisting central banks to create enabling environment for branchless and mobile financial services;
Period2014-2019
PartnersThe MasterCard Foundation, Bill & Melinda Gates Foundation, Sida, Australian Department of Foreign Affairs and Trade (DFAT)
Total project cost and UNCDF contribution$36,083,598.88
$1,918,415
Progress
Budget
Results (including scaling and policy impact)

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