Uganda: November 7, 2002


A new study  estimates the cost of war in northern Uganda to be 1.33 billion dollars over the last 16 years. Sound small? Put it in context. Comparing a very poor, developing, agricultural countrys economy with the complex, multi-faceted US economy is tough. Economists argue over what constitutes an accurate yardstick. Still, lets give it a shot and compare approximate costs in terms of estimated GDPs. (This is admittedly a rough comparison, but its an instructive way to begin to grasp what Ugandas war against the LRA is costing that nation.) The roughly 80 million dollars a year for the war is around three percent of Ugandas GDP. Three percent a year of GDP would cost the US around 250 billion dollars (estimate an eight trillion a year GDP) or $4 TRILLION dollars over 16 years in constant dollars. One NGO report suggests Uganda is spending even more this year. Operation Iron Fist (cross-border ops in Sudan against the LRA) has already cost over 250 million dollars. These figures are extremely rough. However, the big picture is incontestable. The war in the north a war on the LRAs terrorists-- is thoroughly crippling Ugandas already fragile economy. Some of the money disappears in graft. Transparency International once ranked Uganda as one of the six most corrupt nations in the world, and estimated that around 55 percent of all government money is lost through graft. The war in Acholiland has displaced approximately a million people. One unofficial figure puts the number of lives lost at 23,520, and 12,320 of the dead are civilians. (Austin Bay)


Article Archive

Uganda: Current 2013 2012 2011 2010 2009 2008 2007 2006 2005 2004 2003 2002 2001 2000 1999 



Help Keep Us Soaring

We need your help! Our subscription base has slowly been dwindling. We need your help in reversing that trend. We would like to add 20 new subscribers this month.

Each month we count on your subscriptions or contributions. You can support us in the following ways:

  1. Make sure you spread the word about us. Two ways to do that are to like us on Facebook and follow us on Twitter.
  2. Subscribe to our daily newsletter. We’ll send the news to your email box, and you don’t have to come to the site unless you want to read columns or see photos.
  3. You can contribute to the health of StrategyPage. A contribution is not a donation that you can deduct at tax time, but a form of crowdfunding. We store none of your information when you contribute..
Subscribe   Contribute   Close