Because the COVID-19 pandemic and the mitigation measures put in place to minimize the spread and transmission of the disease may disrupt the functioning of markets in Uganda, WFP increased the coverage and data collection frequency of its market monitoring system to better inform decision making.
For markets in Karamoja and the rest of the country, prices of key national staples including maize, beans, and sorghum are monitored.
In Karamoja, the price of goats is also monitored. For refugee settlement markets, the price of the food commodities that constitute the WFP General Food Assistance (GFA) food basket (maize grain, beans, vegetable oil and salt) are monitored and the price of the GFA food basket is compared with the GFA cash transfer value to gauge the purchasing power of refugees that receive the GFA as cash.
- Refugee Settlement Markets
• Overall, the market price of the GFA food basket decreased by 7 percent from June to the first half of July 2020. In the South West and West Nile settlements, the average market price of the food basket decreased by 8 percent and 7 percent respectively from June to the first half of July 2020.
• For the first time since February 2020, the WFP transfer value when averaged for all settlements could cover 100 percent of the cost of the GFA food basket in both South West and West Nile settlements.
• The GFA food basket was most expensive in Adjumani, Lobule and Rhino camp refugee settlements where the WFP cash transfer value could only cover 90 percent, 93 percent and 94 percent of the cost of the food basket respectively.
• The average prices of all GFA food basket commodities (maize, beans, vegetable oil, salt) decreased from June to the first half of July. Among the GFA food basket commodities, maize grain (11 percent) recorded the highest decrease whereas vegetable oil (1 percent) recorded the least decrease.
- Karamoja Markets
• The average price of maize grain decreased by 7 percent from June to the first half of July 2020, after registering a 3 percent decline from May to June 2020. Prices are expected to decline further in July as first season harvest starts in most parts of the region.
• The average price of beans across all reference markets decreased by 6 percent from June to the first half of 2020, after declining by 9 percent from May to June 2020. The first season harvest of 2020 continues to increase the supply of beans in the market which has caused a decline in the average price of beans, whose prices had consistently increased from January to May 2020.
- Key Markets in the Rest of the Country
• The average price of maize grain decreased by 11 percent from June to the first half of July 2020 after it had remained stable from April to June 2020.
• The first season harvest has increased the supply of beans in the markets , resulting in a drop in the average price of beans in most reference markets. Overall, the average price of beans further dropped by 4 percent from June to the first half of July 2020 after decreasing 15 percent from May to June 2020.
• In the first half of July 2020, the average price of sorghum decreased by 9 percent from June 2020. Average sorghum prices had remained stable from April to May 2020 and increased by 10 percent from May to June 2020.