Uganda's Sawlog Production Grant Scheme: a success story from Africa
The Sawlog Production Grant Scheme (SPGS) has supported private sector tree planting in Uganda since 2004. The project has been the catalyst for attracting substantial investment into timber plantations from small-medium local growers to large foreign investors. Over 10,000 hectares have been already established with huge interest to do much more. Many rural jobs are being created and the foundations are being laid for a sustainable, commercial forest industry in Uganda. The SPGS has evolved into a robust model that successfully engages private growers: and this is in a country where tree planting on a commercial scale was always considered the State's business. The background and modus operandi of the project are detailed in this article as well as the challenges encountered. With the project creating considerable interest from other countries, the key elements that have contributed to making the SPGS a success are discussed to encourage its replication elsewhere.