Climate Risk Country Profile - Uganda



Uganda is a land-locked country located in East Africa and lies in both the northern and southern hemispheres, with approximate latitudes of 2°S to 5°N and approximate longitudes of 29.5° to 36.0°. The country is approximately 241,500 km2 and is bordered by Kenya to the east, South Sudan to the North, Tanzania and Rwanda to the south, and the Democratic Republic of the Congo to the West. 17% of the country is covered by water and swamp land. The central part of Uganda is a plateau, surrounded by four main mountain ranges: Rwenzori, Elgon, Mufumbira, and Moroto; the tallest point is the peak of Mt. Rwenzori at 5,110 m. Uganda has substantial natural resources, including relatively fertile soils; a high degree of biodiversity; rich vegetation; abundant water resources; small deposits of copper, gold, other minerals, and oil. However, the country also faces several developmental constraints such as high population growth (the second highest in the world), post-conflict conditions in the North, soil erosion and degradation, and impacts of malaria and HIV/AIDS; added stressors from climate change are expected to exacerbate these challenges. Figure 1 shows the elevation for Uganda.

A low-income country, Uganda has a population over 44.3 million (2019), with an annual population growth rate of 3.6% (2019). Uganda’s population is projected to reach 63.8 million by 2030 and 105.7 million by 2050. The country has a Gross Domestic Product (GDP) of $35.1 billion (2019), growing at an average annual rate of 4.5% over the past five years. The national poverty rate increased to 20% in 2017, however, the poorest region: the Northern region, decreased its poverty rate from 44% (2013) to 33% (2017). According to 2019 data, the country’s GDP is primarily comprised of the agriculture sector, which contributed 23.1% to GDP, the industry sector (including mining, construction, electricity, water and gas), which contributed 26.3% of GDP, the export of goods and services which contributed 17.2% to the country’s economy;8 tourism which contributed 6.6% to GDP in 2016.

Uganda submitted its Nationally-Determined Contributions to the UNFCCC in 2016, in support of the country’s efforts to realize its development goals as laid out in its Poverty Reduction Strategy Paper (2010) and its National Climate Change Policy (2015). Uganda was one of the first countries to mainstream the Sustainable Development Goals into its development plan and developed the Uganda Green Growth Development Strategy in order to operationalize green growth planning into the country’s development plans. Uganda is particularly focused on protecting its economy and the livelihoods of its population, which is highly dependent upon natural resources and as such the government is working to reduce vulnerability. Priorities are focused on increased adaptation for key sectors of agriculture, water, energy and health, and specifically to increase sustainable agricultural and livestock production, improve forestry management, improve infrastructure, and continue to strengthen its disaster risk management activities.