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$48M project to boost Uganda’s youth participation in agribusiness

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At least 250,000 young people in Uganda are expected to join the country’s agribusiness labour market in a $48 million (Ksh 7.3b) project by private financiers.

The Stimulating Agriculture for Youth Employment (SAYE) will target sectors with low entry barriers for young people and high market potential, aiming to boost local income opportunities.

“Our goal is to transform the market ecosystem in Busoga in a way that drives inclusion and economic resilience for the many young people who currently have trouble securing dignified and fulfilling work,” said Surita Sandosham, Heifer International President and Chief Executive Officer.

The project aims to empower young people aged 16 to 35 by improving skills, expanding market access, and offering inclusive financing in key sectors including poultry, horticulture, oilseed, dairy, and beef value chains.

Young women will make up 70pc of participants, while three percent will be young persons with disabilities.

“We are committed to creating opportunities for young people in agriculture as part of our Young Africa Works strategy. Our goal is to enable 4.3 million Ugandan youth, particularly young women, to access dignified and fulfilling work by 2030. This initiative will equip them with the necessary skills and resources to engage in various aspects of the agriculture value chain,” added Adrian Bukenya, Country Director for Uganda at the Mastercard Foundation.

The seven-year programme in the Busoga sub-region of Eastern Uganda ends in 2029.