Economies of East African Countries and Some Suggestions for Investors (1)

Mekki ElMograbi is a press writer on African affairs.
He can be reached through his email (elmograbi@gmail.com)
Or his contact number +249912139350 (Whatsapp and Telegram)


Uganda is famous for its production of fruits, fish, tea, tobacco, flowers, and vanilla but do you know that Uganda made nearly 600 million USD out of coffee production in the year 2017? Do you know that Uganda is the second-largest producer of Coffee in Africa after Ethiopia?

In Uganda, the informal economy is predominantly by very hardworking and responsible women. What we need is to develop this sector through women empowerment programs not by imposing laws and forcing the government to intervene heavily in this sector. I wrote before “Uganda, the land of fertile soil and women” because of the women whom I have seen carrying a baby and working to feed three. Also, it is famous for its very fertile land and regular rainfall.

I have some comments on the robust informal economy in Uganda but firstly I am not in full agreement with the definition “the informal economy or the grey economy is the part of an economy that is neither taxed nor monitored by the government.” I usually, say in Africa to differentiate between “formal” and “informal” is difficult while to differentiate between the roles and responsibilities of the government and the community is semi-impossible.

Simply, most of the sectors that are classified as informal in Africa are practicing kinds of direct social responsibility for the benefits of their communities under the shadow of their government and within indirect involvement. The so-called “informal sector” provides well-organized economic opportunities in some African countries better than the government and its formal sector.

I suggest for “women empowerment” stakeholders both in Business and NGOs to establish agribusiness that strongly connected with the informal sector with the government as a partner. That means you will develop the informal sector into a formal one without too much noise. Let is make Uganda the best model for that!


Before you read this paragraph, search online for Lassqoray can of tuna, a brand “made in Somaliland”, this gives you an indicator that very soon you will hear another factory of canned tuna in Mogadishu or other coastal cities of Somalia. You will hear more developments in the sectors of trade in Somalia in the coming two years.

For the Somali diaspora, I say it again, just come because your country is doing well. For foreign investors, I say, make sure that you are coming to a sector that needs foreign investment because the Somali diaspora communities now have money and knowledge, they can make big businesses in their country. The UN estimates that more than two million people from Somalia are living outside of the country’s borders. According to my experience, they are very successful and brave people, they are dominating the trade and some African cities and even some sections and streets of European and American cities. For this reason, my advice for foreign investors is to think about construction and infrastructure.

Yes, the economy of Somalia has indeed survived – after two decades of war – as an informal economy but I do believe that Somali people can build a very advanced economy faster than expected and I have proof for that. If they can run a very complicated, huge, and secure business of money transfer that means they have the mentality that could shift to a smart system quickly.

The improvement in security conditions in Mogadishu and other cities means that the country will witness a new movement in the fields of construction and infrastructure.

According to my point of view, the Somali economy is expected to accelerate in growth and development that exceed its pre-civil war levels.


Although they are small islands with very nice weather and warm sunny beaches. In reality, Seychelles is more than a beautiful touristic resort.

The economy of Seychelles is based on fishing, tourism, and the best quality of processing of coconuts and vanilla. Also, the country is doing very well in “boat building” and it will be able to compete with other industrial hubs because of its good quality and geographical position.

The country opened its international airport in 1971, since then the tourism became a successful and expanding industry. Industrialization is expected to follow agriculture and tourism in a big boom.

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