“Uganda meets at least the standard of good or advanced practice in 13 of the 36 dimensions of the first three pillars of the IMF’s Fiscal Transparency Code, while 23 of the 36 dimensions are scored as basic or not met, reflecting issues with the coverage, quality, and reliability of some information” IMF Report
The International Monetary Fund report on the ‘Fiscal Transparency Evaluation of Uganda’ concludes that Uganda has some important elements of fiscal transparency in place and these have been added to in recent years through a number of reforms.
This Fiscal Transparency Evaluation on Uganda was prepared by a staff team of the International Monetary Fund. It is based on the information available at the time it was completed in March 2016, according to the IMF Report.
The important elements of fiscal transparency in place include the new Public Finance Management Act 2015 (PFMA), and the roles of the legislature and the executive in the budget process.
The team says the implementation of the Act has enhanced the timeliness of the presentation of the budget to Parliament and the publication of audited annual financial statements in line with good practice.
“Uganda meets at least the standard of good or advanced practice in 13 of the 36 dimensions of the first three pillars of the IMF’s Fiscal Transparency Code, while 23 of the 36 dimensions are scored as basic or not met, reflecting issues with the coverage, quality, and reliability of some information:
The Report however highlights that ‘fiscal reports do not provide a complete picture of all the entities comprising the public sector. The budget and semi-annual budget execution reports only cover about 77 percent of the expenditure of the public sector, as they exclude the full revenues and expenditure of around 63 central government extra-budgetary units, and 32 public corporations.’
Uganda is a signatory of the East African Monetary Union (EAMU) Protocol, which targets the adoption of a single currency in the region by 2024.
According to the Report, the Protocol and accompanying guidelines place additional fiscal reporting requirements on member countries, including the production of regular assessments of the fiscal outlook against the monetary union’s convergence criteria, and an annual fiscal risk statement. The Protocol also requires adherence to fiscal deficit and debt ceilings in the three years ahead of 2024.
“The government has plans for a program of large infrastructure projects using a range of funding instruments, including public-private partnership (PPP) arrangements and external loans. Although such projects are expected to boost economic growth in the medium term, they can be sources of fiscal risks, which the government will need to manage carefully.”