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Uganda Warehousing Receipt System: Improving Market Competitiveness and Service Delivery

Miriam Katunze (), Annette Kuteesa, Theresa Mujumbi and Denis Mahebe

No 260026, Research Series from Economic Policy Research Centre (EPRC)

Abstract: Warehouse Receipt Systems (WRS) allow farmers and traders to access markets and financial Systems. While this system is not new in Uganda, as seen through both public and private efforts since 2004 during its pilot, little is known as to why it failed to ensure market access and credit. With the Uganda Warehouse Receipt System Authority in place, the government of Uganda seeks to reinstate the public warehouse receipt system with a concentration on the electronic-WRS. This study, therefore, critically reviews the evolution of the WRS, reviews the current policy support for the WRS and documents the perceived benefits and challenges of private sector stakeholders of the WRS in Uganda. This paper relies on both quantitative and qualitative analyses to respond to the objectives. The Agricultural Technology and Agribusiness Advisory Services (ATAAS) database by the Uganda Bureau of Statistics (UBOS) is used for quantitative analysis, while the Structure Conduct Performance (SCP) framework is used for qualitative analysis. The results reveal that while the market structure and conduct of the pilot WRS was implemented as theorized, it faced various barriers that led to poor market performance. Overall, the actors perceive that the benefits of the WRS are numerous, including stable and high prices, thereby reducing price exploitation, especially on smallholder farmers. They also perceive that the system will enable access to secure and stable markets using a secure and transferable warehouse receipt. However, the actors perceive that more people will be attracted to the WRS if there is mass sensitization and a revision of the costs of storage, cleaning, and other marketing costs. This paper highlights an important policy implication for the implementation of the WRS, including the need for the government to spearhead the promotion of standards, strengthen the capacity of collective action, and stress the importance of increasing the sensitization of all aspects of the WRS.

Keywords: Agribusiness; Agricultural Finance; Financial Economics; Production Economics (search for similar items in EconPapers)
Date: 2017-06-30
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DOI: 10.22004/ag.econ.260026

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