Kampala — The cost of construction was relatively higher in March than February due to a spike in the price of inputs.
Findings are contained in an indices report by Uganda Bureau of Statistics (Ubos), which indicate that construction rates for both houses and roads went up for the year ended March 2019.
The report also samples price rates in other sectors of the economy such as hotels and restaurants, manufacturing and utility sectors, among others.
The construction index monitors the cost of the end product visa-vis inputs over time as well as provide an indication of growth rate in the construction sector.
While releasing the survey findings in Kampala on Wednesday, Mr Dick Wanasolo Wada, a senior statistician business and industry at Ubos said: "The average input prices into the whole construction sector increased by 2.1 per cent for the year ending March 2019 compared to 0.9 per cent for the same period last year."
However, this was a slight reduction from February's rate which had increased by 2.8 per cent. Last year in February the rate stood at 0.6 per cent.
Mr Wada said the increase was mainly driven by the upsurge in the price of inputs across the board which stood at 1.3 per cent for residential houses, and 2.3 per cent and 2.6 per cent, respectively for non-residential buildings and civil works.
In the period, he said, the price of roofing materials increased by 1.1 per cent while paint increased by 6.4 per cent due to an upsurge in the price of oil-based additives.
Lime increased by 5.7 per cent influenced by increased pricing from Kenya, wages rose by 0.5 per cent while diesel increased by 16.2 per cent due to movements on the world market.
However, some items, according to the survey such as cement, steel bars, iron and steel materials, registered minimal declines.
The survey also noted that price rates in the manufacturing and utility sectors registered some decline.
Mr William Anguyo, the principal statistician business and industry at Ubos, said price rates in the manufacturing sector decreased by 4.4 per cent in the period compared to 3.5 per cent, which was registered in February.
This, he said was mainly influenced by an 8.8 per cent decrease in the price of processed food products in March compared to a 7.7 per cent decline in February.
During the period, Anguyo noted, fish prices fell by -37.1 per cent, mainly because of high supply yet demand stayed static in the period. Prices of tea fell by -20.6 per cent, mainly because of stiff competition at the world market.