What is the 'UGX (Ugandan Shilling)'

Ugandan shilling (UGX) is the currency abbreviation for the Ugandan shilling, the national currency for the Republic of Uganda. Up until 2013, the Ugandan shilling had a 100 cents division. The symbol USh often represents the currency. Revaluation of the money happened in 1987.​​​​​​​

BREAKING DOWN 'UGX (Ugandan Shilling)'

Ugandan shilling (UGX) is the foreign exchange​​​​​​​ (FX) abbreviation for the unit of currency of the Republic of Uganda. Uganda is a landlocked nation in East Africa in a region known as the African Great Lakes region. The country has a highly diverse population consisting of dozens of individual ethnic groups. It boasts fertile land which is rich in natural resources. This lush landscape may explain why it was dubbed “the pearl of Africa” by Winston Churchill after he visited the region while the country was under British rule. It is not surprising that the nation’s economy has a primary basis on agriculture.

The area was a British protectorate between 1894 and 1962 when they gained independence. Following independence, the nation experienced a time of civil war and other conflicts including a six-year guerrilla war. These conflicts caused many deaths. Disagreement between tribal groups within the government and the vast regional Buganda kingdom have marred the early years of independence. This instability within the government led to a military coup in 1971 led by General Idi Amin. Amin's dictatorship carried out mass murders, and many fled the country.

The restoration of legal rule came in 1979 when neighboring Tanzania assisted exiles in overthrowing the dictator. Ongoing party disputes within the nation's governmental structure and corruption have continued to handcuff the country's growth. In 2012, the EU, Germany, United Kingdom and other countries removed aid to Uganda after the embezzlement of $12.6 million in donated funds meant to help the nation's most impoverished region. Also, many nations condemn to Uganda's poor record on human rights, torture, and child labor practices. 

Agriculture is the most significant economic earner for Uganda with coffee being a primary crop and most of the population being subsistence farmers. The country has oil and gas resources, but they contribute little to the economy. The people of Uganda is one of the poorest in the world which has led to under education.

According to World Bank data, Uganda is a heavily indebted country. Currently, the country experiences a 6.0% annual inflation rate and has a gross domestic product (GDP) growth of a 4.0%, as of 2017, which is the most current year of available data.

Circulation of the Uganda Shilling

In the beginning, the East African Currency Board handled monetary policy for the nation. With the creation of the Bank of Uganda (BoU) in 1966, financial decisions transferred to the new central bank, and the nation introduced the country’s first official currency. The Bank of Uganda is the only entity with the right to mint, distribute, or destroy currency in Uganda. Coins have denominations of 1, 2, 5, 10, 50, 100, 200, 500 and 1000 shillings, while banknotes have denominations of 1,000, 2,000, 5,000, 10,000, 20,000, and 50,000 shillings. 

The first issue Ugandan shilling (UGS), was introduced in 1966 and replaced the East African shilling at par. Following its initial release, inflation and government regime transitions forced several changes in the Uganda Shilling. In 1987, the government issued a new shilling which received the currency symbol of UGX. The old shilling exchanged at 100 for a single new shilling. 

In 2010, the Bank of Uganda circulated an issue of shilling banknotes which have enhanced security features and have images depicting the nation's history and culture. Although the new shilling is a stable currency and used in most financial transactions in Uganda, the U.S. dollar (USD), Great Britain pound (GBP) and the euro (EUR) also see use in the nation.

  1. KES (Kenyan Shilling)

    KES is the foreign exchange (FX) trading symbol for the Republic ...
  2. KES

    The currency abbreviation or currency symbol for the Kenyan shilling ...
  3. TZS (Tanzanian Shilling)

    The TZS (Tanzanian Shilling) is the official currency for Tanzania ...
  4. SOS (Somaliland Shilling)

    The currency abbreviation for the Somaliland shilling (SOS), ...
  5. Quid

    Quid is a nickname for the British pound, also called the pound ...
  6. China Concepts Stock

    China Concepts Stock is the stock of a company whose assets or ...
Related Articles
  1. Insights

    What is Money?

    Money: It's a part of everyone's life, and we all want it, but what is it, how does it gain value, and how it was created?
  2. Investing

    The Pros And Cons Of A Pegged Exchange Rate

    A pegged exchange rate occurs when one country fixes its currency’s value to the value of another country’s currency. But it has both pros and cons.
  3. Trading

    Currency fluctuations: How they effect the economy

    Currency fluctuations are a natural outcome of the floating exchange rate system that is the norm for most major economies. Read on for what effects these changes can have.
  4. Trading

    6 factors that influence exchange rates

    Aside from interest rates and inflation, the exchange rate is one of the most important determinants of a country's level of economic health.
  5. Trading

    Drastic Currency Changes: What's The Cause?

    Currency fluctuations often defy logic. Learn the trends and factors that result in these movements.
  6. Trading

    The top 8 most tradable currencies

    Currencies can provide diversification for a portfolio that's in a rut. Find out which ones you need to know.
  7. Insights

    The Go-To Currency In 50 Years

    Discover why the euro will likely become heir to the currency throne.
  8. Investing

    The 3 Reasons Why Chinese Invest in Africa

    Learn about the increasing level of foreign direct investment by China in Africa, and understand the major reasons for China's African investments.
  9. Financial Advisor

    How Low Can Oil Go?

    Despite recent spikes, oil will likely move lower over the next year. But how low can it go?
  10. Insights

    How Much do Wimbledon Champions Make

    And other numbers from the oldest tennis tournament in the Grand Slam, including the price of strawberries and cream.
  1. What is foreign exchange?

    Foreign exchange is the conversion of a country's currency into another. In a free economy, a country's currency is valued ... Read Answer >>
  2. How does inflation affect the exchange rate between two nations?

    Countries attempt to balance interest rates and inflation, but the interrelationship between the two is complex and can influence ... Read Answer >>
  3. What indicators are used in exchange rate forecasting?

    Learn what economic indicators are most widely used to forecast a country’s exchange rate and how various foreign exchange ... Read Answer >>
  4. How are international exchange rates set?

    Knowing the value of your home currency in relation to different foreign currencies helps investors to analyze investments ... Read Answer >>
Trading Center