Refugees in Uganda

Report
from UN High Commissioner for Refugees
Published on 20 Jun 2017

By the end of 2016, Uganda was home to 940,800 refugees, originating from South Sudan (640,008), the Democratic Republic of the Congo (205,023), Burundi (40,742), Somalia (30,689), Rwanda (15,231), Eritrea (4,511), Sudan (2,545) and Ethiopia (2,002). By the end of May 2017, Uganda was home to 1,277,476 refugees, originating from South Sudan (947,427), the Democratic Republic of the Congo (204,413), Burundi (34,241), Somalia (25,321), Rwanda (13,907), Eritrea (4,310), Sudan (2,549) and Ethiopia (1,798). By the end of 2016, Uganda had the fifth-largest refugee population after Turkey (2.9 million), Pakistan (1.4 million), Lebanon (1million) and Islamic Republic of Iran (979,400). By the end of May 2017, Uganda had the third-largest refugee population after Turkey (2.99 million) and Pakistan (1.34 million).

Since the end of 206, the refugee population in Uganda has increased by 336,676 people.

Refugee new arrivals in Uganda

Uganda reported the largest number of new refugees in 2016, with 514,000 new arrivals, mostly in the second half of the year. Nearly all of these new refugees (489,000) originated from South Sudan, with a smaller number from Burundi (18,600). Between 1 January and 31 May 2017, Uganda received 277,194 refugees from South Sudan. Since July 2016, Uganda has received an average of 2,000 South Sudanese refugees a day.

Number of refugees in Uganda per 1 million USD dollars GDP

The size of a country’s economy can be estimated, with limitations, by its gross domestic product (GDP). Comparing the overall size of a host country’s economy to the size of the refugee population indicates the economic resources that may be available to meet the needs of the refugee population. In 2016, Uganda was the third country with the highest number of refugees in relation to its national economy during the year, hosting 36 refugees per 1 million USD dollars GDP. By the end of May 2017, Uganda hosted 47 refugees per 1 million USD dollars GDP.

Number of refugees in Uganda compared to the population size

The size of a national population is important for estimating the impact of large numbers of refugees on a country in socio-demographic terms. In Uganda, there were 24 refugees per 1,000 inhabitants by the end of 2016. Uganda was among the seven least developed countries after Cameroon, Chad, the Democratic Republic of the Congo, Ethiopia, Kenya and Sudan, hosting 4.9 million refugees, 28 per cent of the global total.

By the end of May 2017, in Uganda there were 30 refugees per 1,000 inhabitants.

Demographics of refugees in Uganda

By the end of 2016, the refugee population in Uganda consisted of 555,000 children (59 per cent), 367,000 men and women between 18 and 59 years (39 per cent) and 18,800 elderly people above 65 years (2 per cent). By the end of May 2017, the refugee population in Uganda consisted of 766,000 children (60 per cent), 472,000 men and women between 18 and 59 years (37 per cent) and 25,500 elderly people above 65 years (2 per cent).

Refugee outflows from South Sudan

The crisis in South Sudan led to a substantial increase in people fleeing the country, especially in the second half of 2016. During the year, the number of refugees from South Sudan nearly doubled, increasing from 778,700 at end-2015 to over 1.4 million people at end-2016.