Uganda's warehouse receipt systems: improving market performance and productivity
Strengthening regional value chains; trade, competitiveness, regional integration
- Miriam Katunze
Warehouse Receipt Systems (WRS) allow farmers, and traders to access markets and financial Systems. While this system is not new in Uganda, as seen by both public and private effort since 2004-during its pilot, very little is known 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 E-WRS. This study therefore seeks to document perceived benefits and challenges of private sector stakeholders of WRS in Uganda. This paper relies on qualitative data and follows the Structure-Conduct- Performance framework used to analyse agricultural commodity markets. 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. Despite the challenges, actors are optimistic that reinstating the WRS will lead to better access to markets and credit. The paper draws important policy implication for the implementation of the WRS including the need for government to spearhead promotion of standards; capacity strengthening of collective action; the importance of increased sensitization on all aspects of the WRS.