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Uganda - Govt introduces agriculture insurance scheme

Introduction of an agriculture insurance scheme is one of the key priorities in the next financial year, finance minister, Matia Kasaija has announced.

The scheme is used in many countries to cushion farmers from calamities such as drought or floods and ensure that they have resources to produce during next season.

Under the scheme, farmers contribute a small premium of about 2% of their output and the insurer is sure to step in when harvest is bad.
Ugandan farmers have experienced two consecutive bad seasons characterized by drought and attacks by the fall armyworms, both of which have affected crop production and food prices.

Kasaija said the new scheme would be rolled out across the country and that government will subsidize agriculture insurance premiums for both small and large scale farmers.

In recent weeks, government has embarked on registration of farmers across the country as part of measures to guide planning for the sector.

Besides the insurance, government will in the next year start construction of five irrigation schemes include Mubuku II (480 hectares) in Kasese, Doho II (1,178 hectares) in Butaleja, Wadelai (1,000 hectares) in Nebbi, Tochi (500 hectares) in Oyam and Ngenge (880 hectares) in Kween.

Designs for more irrigation schemes are due to be completed in the Acomai River system in Bukedea and the Atari River system in Kween and Bulambuli districts, the minister stated in his budget speech.

All nine Zonal Agricultural Research and Development Institutes will run solar-powered water irrigation systems which will also be rolled out across the country, the minister pledged.

Support the establishment of post-harvest handling storage by the private sector, together with cooperatives at parish-level;
Government also seeks to expand water irrigation infrastructure on major lakes and rivers and to strengthen security of land tenure by formalizing land ownership and household acquisition of titles.

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