Production of most industrial products declined in 1973, largely because of the expulsion of skilled Asian personnel. A precipitous decline followed, with output in 1985 little more than a third of the postindependence peak levels of 1970–72. As of 2002, however, growth over the past decade had occurred in manufacturing and construction, among other sectors, and the size of the Ugandan economy had doubled. Industrial contribution to GDP was 18% in 2000. The agricultural industry produces cotton, coffee, tea, sugar, tobacco, edible oils, and dairy products. Ugandan industrial production also includes grain milling, brewing, vehicle assembly, textiles, steel, metal products, cement, soap, shoes, animal feed, fertilizers, paint, and matches.
The textile industry suffers from a lack of skilled labor but is being encouraged by funds from the EU and the Arab Development Bank. General Motors is assembling vehicles in Uganda, and Lonrho has returned to manage its previously owned brewery, to build an oil pipeline, and to join in agricultural marketing efforts. Coca-Cola, Pepsi, and Schweppes are producing soft drinks. A tannery will make Uganda self-sufficient in leather products. Batteries, canned foods, pharmaceuticals, and salt are among the other products being produced in Uganda's industrial sector.
In 2002, the country planned to build from one to three hydroelectric projects along the Nile River, and this and other infrastructure projects fueled the construction industry.