Uganda's policy reforms, industry competitiveness and regional integration: a comparison with Kenya
The paper reviews, first, Uganda's economic policies affecting the industrial sector and analyses the international competitiveness of Uganda's manufacturing industries, using a sample of 21 firms in 12 industries. It computes indices of comparative advantage, export and domestic competitiveness and compares the Ugandan indicators with those of Kenyan firms. It also identifies the main sources and obstacles to competitiveness using a decomposition method, which breaks the unit cost indices down into their main components. The study is timely as Uganda is re-establishing a free trade zone with Kenya and Tanzania, and also faces liberalized trade with the rest of the world. The numerical results of the study suggest that Ugandan firms, although not generally cost-competitive with Kenyan and other international firms, due to the country's land-locked geography and its de-industrialization under the preceding political regimes, have benefited from a recently established business-friendly environment and are more competitive in several industries than is generally assumed. This means that they may not be able to export internationally, but they are likely to hold their ground against Kenyan imports under regional free trade.
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Volume (Year): 13 (2004)
Issue (Month): 3 ()
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