Uganda’s private-sector activity hurt by fewer export orders – survey

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Contractors assemble steel for the construction of Karuma 600 megawatts hydroelectric power project under construction on River Nile, Uganda February 20, 2018. REUTERS/James Akena

KAMPALA, March 5 (Reuters) – Uganda’s private-sector economic activity decelerated in February, slowed by weak exports, delays in customer payments and rising input prices, a survey showed on Monday.

The Markit Stanbic Bank Uganda Purchasing Managers’ Index (PMI) declined to 51.1, down from 52.0 last month. A reading above 50 indicates expansion; anything below, a contraction.

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“February saw a contraction in the volume of new orders from abroad,” the survey said, adding it was the first time in four months export orders had decreased. Payments from customers were delayed as well, leading to cash shortages.

Economic activity in the month was also squeezed by a surge in costs, which pushed up purchase prices, the survey said. Rising costs of living pushed up wages, too.

Private-sector activity slowed in January, too, as input costs rose [nL8N1PS5E8].

Markit Stanbic reported healthy growth in volumes of domestic new orders, which it attributed to an“expanding customer base combined with intensive advertising campaigns.”

– Detailed PMI data are only available under licence from IHS Markit and customers need to apply for a licence.

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For further information, please phone IHS Markit on +800 6275 4800 or email economics@ihsmarkit.com

(Reporting by Elias Biryabarema)

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Godwin Okafor is a Financial Journalist, Internet Social Entrepreneur and Founder of Naija247news Media Limited. He has over 16 years experience in financial journalism. His experience cuts across traditional and digital media. He started his journalism career at Business Day, Nigeria and founded Naija247news Media in 2010. Godwin holds a Bachelors degree in Industrial Relations and Personnel Management from the Lagos State University, Ojo, Lagos. He is an alumni of Lagos Business School and a Fellow of the University of Pennsylvania (Wharton Seminar for Business Journalists). Over the years, he has won a number of journalism awards. Godwin is the chairman of Emmerich Resources Limited, the publisher of Naija247news.

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