During 2020, retailing current value sales for the first time in the review period due a combination of to the economic shock of the pandemic and restrictions on movement, but they rebounded strongly in 2021. The competitive landscape in store-based retailing saw significant changes during the latter part of the review period, while supermarket and hypermarket chain Carrefour entering and South Africa-based Shoprite and Game exiting, in addition to Kenyan supermarket chain Tuskys.
Having declined during 2020 amid the introduction of tight restrictions on movement and the economic shock of the pandemic, which undermined the purchasing power of a significant number of local consumers, retailing current value sales strongly during 2021. Due to lockdown measures, non-essential retail outlets were forced to close for extended periods during both 2020 and 2021.
The local government in Uganda launched a very ambitious initiative under the name BUBU (Buy Uganda Build Uganda) towards the end of the review period. The enterprise aims to promote locally manufactured goods and favour the employment of local people.
Prior to the pandemic, Uganda was seeing good economic growth, with rising private and public investment and strong growth in private consumption. However, the economic shock of the pandemic led to a decline in retailing current value sales for the first time in the review period during 2020.
Road infrastructure is improving in Uganda, although it can be difficult to reach remote areas. Urban and intercity transportation infrastructure is increasingly good, with public and private investment in transport projects such as Pioneer Easy Bus, Uganda Railways and the Entebbe-Kampala Expressway, with the latter launching in mid-2018.
Informal retailing is strong in Uganda. This is linked to high levels of poverty and a large unskilled workforce, in addition to the high cost of doing business and a lack of capital for many retailers.
Retailing current value sales will exhibit robust growth during the review period, supported by a post-pandemic economic rebound arising from a successful vaccination programme, population growth and urbanisation. On the other hand, mounting inflationary pressure will negative affect the purchasing power of local consumers.
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Sales of new and used goods to the general public for personal or household consumption. Excludes specialist retailers of motor vehicles, motorcycles, vehicle parts, fuel. Also excludes foodservice, rental and hire and wholesale industries (Cash and Carry). Sales value excluding or including VAT/Sales Tax. Retailing is the aggregation of Store-based retailing and Non-store retailing. Retailing excludes the informal retail sector. Informal retailing is retail trade which is not declared to the tax authorities. Informal retailing encompasses (a) sales generated by unregistered and unlicensed retailers, ie retailers operating illegally, and (b) any proportion of sales generated by a registered and licensed retailer which is not declared to the tax authorities. Unregistered and unlicensed retailers operate predominantly (although not exclusively) as street hawkers or operate open market stalls, as these channels are harder for the authorities to monitor than permanent outlets. Activities in the illegal market, which is usually understood to refer to trade in illegal, counterfeit or stolen merchandise, are included within our definition of informal retailing. Activities in the “grey market”, which is usually understood to refer to trade in legal merchandise that is sold through unauthorized channels – for example cigarettes bought legally in another country, legally imported, but sold at lower prices than in authorized channels – will be included as informal retailing if no tax is paid on sale by the retailer. However if the retailer pays tax – for example on cigarettes bought legally in another country but sold at a lower price than standard – the sale is included within formal retailing. In relation to click and collect purchases (i.e. where purchases are made over the internet but picked up at store) where the sales data is attributed depends on where the payment is made: If payment is made in store, then the sale is included in store-based sales. If payment is made over the internet, then the sale is included in internet retailing.See All of Our Definitions
This report originates from Passport, our Retailing research and analysis database.
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