Uganda earned US$515.94m from 2020 coffee exports increasing by 18.19%

UGANDA – Uganda’s total coffee export in 2020, January – December amounted to 5,492,525 bags of coffee each weighing 60kg earning the country US$ 515.94 million.

According to a report by the Uganda Coffee Development Authority (UCDA), this was a 21.53% rise in quantity compared to the previous year’s 4,519,563 bags, valued at US$ 436.54 million, indicating a 18.19% increase.

Uganda being one of the leading coffee exporters in the region, closed the year with exports in December 2020 amounting to 422,922 bags worth US$ 37.78 million.

This was a decline from November’s US$38.61 million earned from trade of 519,683 bags.

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However, year-on-year comparison have indicated it was an increase of 28.06% and 9.42% in quantity and value respectively compared to December 2019.

Robust increases in both value and quantity while Arabica declines

By type, the exported amount in December comprised of 375,209 bags of Robusta worth US$ 30.87 million representing a 33.72% increase in quantity and 23.51% rise in value compared to the corresponding period the previous year.

Increasing Robusta exports during the month was on account of fruition of the newly planted coffee as well as favourable weather.

December coffee exports amounted to 422,922 bags worth US$ 37.78 million

Meanwhile, Arabica exports decreased in both quantity and value by 3.89% and 0.86% respectively reaching 47,713 bags worth US$ 6.92 million.

The reduction has been attributed mostly to the off-year biennial cycle characteristic of Arabica production.

Leading exporters and importers of the month

During the closing month of the year, 74.35% of the total volume was exported by 10 exporters, out of 39 companies which performed during the month compared to 72.88% in November 2020, reflecting reduced concentration.

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Ugacof still retained its position as the leading exporter with a market share of 18.90% compared to November’s 16.89%. It was followed by Kyagalanyi Coffee 9.84% which in the previous month was in 6th position.

The other exporters were Louis Dreyfus Company 9.78%; Ideal Quality Commodities 8.54%, Olam Uganda Limited 5.81%; Kawacom Ltd 5.05%; Export Trading Company 4.49%; and Grainpilse Ltd 4.36%.

There were changes in positions compared to last month reflecting competition at the exporter level.

Out of the 39 exporters that performed, 19 exported Robusta Coffee only while 8 exported Arabica coffee only.

Shifting focus to importers, the top 10 buyers held a market share of 59.06% of total exports, lower than 61.77% the previous month.

Sucafina led with a market share of 18.97% compared to 15.66% in November 2020. It was followed by Olam International 8.30%; Altasheel Import & Export Enterprises 6.78%; Ecom Agro Industrialist 4.98%; Volcafe 4.69%; Bernhard Rothfos 3.49%; Icona Cafe 3.87%; Aldwami Company 2.79% Elmathahib 2.48% and Strauss Commodities 2.33%.

Minimal changes in relative position compared to the previous month reflect market consolidation of major buyers of Uganda coffee.

Italy continued to cement its position as top buyer of Uganda’s coffee with a market share of 24.07% compared with 30.54% last month.

It was followed by Germany 17.68%, Sudan 13.05%, Belgium 10.34% and India 6.96%.

Europe remained the main destination for Uganda’s coffees with 63% imports share while Africa amounted to 84,098 bags, a market share of 19.88% compared to 97,418 bags (22.64%) the previous month.

African countries who purchased the commodity included Sudan, Morocco, Kenya, Algeria, Egypt South Africa and South Sudan reflecting increased continental trade.

Future outlook

The report has further highlighted that, world coffee exports amounted to 10.15 million bags in November 2020, compared with 9.6 million in November 2019.

Global coffee production for 2019/20 is estimated at 168.55 million bags versus consumption of 167.59 million bags.

Exports for the first 2 months of 2020/21 coffee year (October-November 2020) increased by 6.5% to 20.20 million bags from 18.97 million bags the previous period (October November 2019/ 2020).

Uganda projects that export of the commodity in January will decline to 400,000 bags due to drier weather.

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