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Uganda Tops World’s Fastest Growing Economies Up To 2025-Harvard Report

Uganda and India top the list of the fastest growing economies to 2025, at 7.7 percent annually, a latest research released by the Center for International Development at Harvard University (CID) has said.

According to the report released on June 28, 2017, Uganda joins three other East African countries in the top 10 fastest growing countries, though a significant fraction of that growth is due to rapid population growth, the report reveals,

On a per capita basis, Uganda is the only East African country that remains in the top 10 in the growth projections, though at 4.5 percent annually its prospects are more modest, the report reveals.

On the other hand, the researchers attribute India’s rapid growth prospects to the fact that it is particularly well positioned to continue diversifying into new areas, given the capabilities accumulated to date. India has made inroads in diversifying its export base to include more complex sectors, such as chemicals, vehicles, and certain electronics.

The projections warn of a continued slowdown in global growth over the coming decade, with China’s growth continuing to slow down.

The report says the growth projections are based on measures of each country’s economic complexity, which captures the diversity and sophistication of the productive capabilities embedded in its exports and the ease with which it could further diversify by expanding those capabilities.

In examining the latest 2015 global trade data, CID researchers find a clear turn in trade winds, as 2015 marks the first year for which world exports have fallen since the 2009 global financial crisis.

This time around, the decline in trade was driven largely by the fall in oil prices. High oil prices had driven a decade of rapid growth in oil economies, outpacing expectations.

Since the decline in oil prices in mid 2014, growth in oil economies ground to a halt, where it is likely to stay, according to the projections, given little progress on diversification and complexity.


“The major oil economies are experiencing the pitfalls of their reliance on one resource. India, Indonesia, and Vietnam have accumulated new capabilities that allow for more diverse and more complex production that predicts faster growth in the coming years,” said Ricardo Hausmann, director of CID, professor at the Harvard Kennedy School (HKS), and the lead researcher of The Atlas of Economic Complexity.

China On The Downturn

The new 2015 data reveal a decline in China’s exports. China’s economic complexity ranking also falls four spots for the first time since the global financial crisis. China’s rapid growth rate over the past decade has narrowed the gap between its complexity and its income, which researchers suggest is the harbinger of slower growth.

The growth projections still have China growing above the world average, though at 4.4 percent annually for the coming decade, the slowdown relative to the current growth trend is significant.

The researchers place the diversity of tacit productive knowledge—or knowhow—that a society has at the heart of the economic growth story.

A central stylized fact of world income differences is that poor countries produce few goods that many countries can make, while rich countries produce a great diversity of goods, including products that few other countries can make. The team uses this fact to measure the amount of knowhow that is held in each economy.

“Economic complexity not only describes why countries are rich or poor today, but also can predict future growth, about five times more accurately than the World Economic Forum’s Global Competitiveness Index,” said Sebastian Bustos, a research fellow at CID.

The growth projections highlight that economic growth fails to follow one easy pattern or rule system. The countries that are expected to be the fastest growing – India, Turkey, Indonesia, Uganda, and Bulgaria – are diverse in all political, institutional, geographic and demographic dimensions. “What they share is a focus on expanding the capabilities of their workforce that leaves them well positioned to diversify into new products, and products of increasingly greater complexity,” said Timothy Cheston, a research fellow at CID.

The economic complexity growth projections differ from those of the IMF and the Economist Intelligence Unit (EIU).

Relative to EIU predictions, CID researchers are less optimistic about a set of countries that include Bangladesh, Cambodia, Iran, Sri Lanka, and Cuba. Conversely, CID researchers have greater optimism for the growth prospects of Uganda, Guatemala, Mexico, Tanzania, and Brazil.

The researchers emphasize that the benefit of these medium-term projections is that nothing is set in stone, but there are many steps policymakers, investors, and business leaders can take to enter more complex production to realize faster growth.

The Center for International Development (CID) at Harvard University is a university-wide center that works to advance the understanding of development challenges and offer viable solutions to problems of global poverty.

The following link contains the full report:

Taddewo William Senyonyi
William is a seasoned business and finance journalist. He is also an agripreneur and a coffee enthusiast.

6 thoughts on “Uganda Tops World’s Fastest Growing Economies Up To 2025-Harvard Report

  1. This research is credible : however my concern is with people reacting to this. Blame games won’t get us anywhere because actually not even one of those youths you term as poor decision makers wish to be poor. You have to look at what you as a person who feels to be in a better solution can do to get others employed. This is actually beneficial to you too for your advancement in life. How I wish we had a private sector bigger than the private sector so that people don’t have to be begging from the state

  2. This is an insult to the people of Uganda where unemployment is 80%……I doubt the credibility of this findings considering the corrupt history of the regime in power.

    • Although there’s high rate of unemployment, gov’t is not to blame completely when a recent report by Ugandan economists indicate that more than 60% of the people are not involved in any productive activity or work. Uganda actually is among the wealthy third world nations as per the report predicting. imagine Uganda spends over $70 USD on importing machinery, food when much land is arable and useless imports like synthetic hair, nails, fashion stuff might even take a big share of the imports. and when the more youth are doing nothing but to spend everything on style and fashion imitating the culture of their western slave masters, it leads to financially devastating situation in families both rural and urban.

      yet there are industries like tourism, IT where one can start up selling services and products provided you have the real mentality, skills and money management habits. the youth is to blame having not dealt well with problems.

  3. Thats good to all Ugandans coz IT is promising liberating them 4rom poverty

  4. Titto Durango

    Starting to doubt the credibility of Havard research. They should either check their data or redefine what they term as economic growth. How does an economy in a slump top growing economies?

    • Titto you should carry out your own research or read more before you doubt the report findings. Uganda deserved the ranking. imagine a country that spends $70 US dollars as import expenditure? how much wealth is that? another report from state house Entebbe indicate that only 33% of Ugandans are involved in productive activities or work. so where are the rest of the people, probably they’re like sitting ducks waiting to be cooked and fed to enemies.

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