FAO in Uganda

National stakeholders join forces to support Ugandan diaspora

Ugandan coffee processors displaying their products during the workshop.

Diaspora engagement for rural development took centre stage during the FAO-Workshop on diaspora in agribusiness.


The Three-day workshop that took place in Mukono from 28th  March to 2nd  April 2021, brought together Governmental line ministries, private sector representatives, civil society and Ugandan diaspora agripreneurs to discuss how to strengthen the enabling environment to harness Ugandan diaspora potential for national development. In particular, the workshop aimed to: (i) strengthen multistakeholder policy dialogue and coordination on migration and agriculture and rural development; (ii) strengthen functional capacities on diaspora engagement in agribusiness; and (iii) validate FAO-Project “Strengthening Capacity to Harness Positive Effects of Migration” Work Plan for 2021.

The workshop was organized in the context of the FAO project “Strengthening Capacity to Harness Positive Effects of Migration”. The project, that aims to enhance the positive impacts of migration for agriculture and rural development in close collaboration with the Ministry of Foreign Affairs (MoFA) and Ministry of Agriculture, Animal Industry and Fisheries (MAAIF), has established a multi-stakeholder project technical working group (TWG) made by government line ministries, agribusiness incubators, youth organizations and Ugandan diaspora agripreneurs. The TWG is actively contributing to the policy debate around how to foster diaspora investments in agribusiness through different fora, including this workshop. 


During the first day of the workshop, the Ministry of Foreign Affairs and Ministry of Internal Affairs presented progress made in the formulation of the diaspora and national migration policies respectively, followed by group discussions on the linkages between migration and agriculture and rural development. Based on the recommendations emerging from the workshop, FAO will actively contribute to the Regulatory Impact Assessment (RIA) for the diaspora policy and national consultations for the finalization of the diaspora and migration policies.


The second and third days were dedicated to government agencies’ presentations of services provided to the Ugandans living abroad. Main presentations, made by the Uganda Export Promotions Board, Uganda Investment Authority, Ministry of Trade, Industry and Cooperatives and National Planning Authority, focused on diaspora investment challenges and opportunities, Uganda’s investment policy and regulatory framework, trade policy for promoting agricultural trade, linkages with diaspora markets, and National Development Plan components related to agribusiness and diaspora.

At the end of the workshop, participants proposed concrete recommendations. These included: (i) keep strengthening technical working group’s capacity on diaspora engagement in agribusiness (ii) enhancing multi-stakeholder engagement in policy and regulatory formulation processes; (iii) raising awareness on existing investments opportunities for diaspora through dedicated online dialogues; and (iv) providing legal aid and agribusiness skills training to diaspora communities to reinforce their employability in the agribusiness sector in Uganda.

In the closing remarks, FAO and TWG members confirmed their continued support to diaspora communities through strengthened skills in agribusiness and enhanced representation in policy dialogue.

In line with workshop recommendations, FAO is committed  to carry out a number of activities by the end of 2021 including; (i) set up a Ugandan diaspora agribusiness network; (ii) organize dialogues on agribusiness investments opportunities for diaspora; (iii) provide Ugandan diaspora and return migrants with agribusiness skills training and legal counselling; and (iv) mainstream agriculture and rural dimensions into the national migration and diaspora policies.