Prime Minister Edouard Ngirente on December 02, presented to both chambers of Parliament government’s strategies to promote trade, focusing on export promotion.
The Prime Minister told legislators that tax incentive program in the manufacturing industry has earned the country $1.7 billion (Rwf1.7 trillion).
Taxes on international trade and transactions during financial year 2021/2022 reached Rwf133 billion, 7.1% of all taxes collected countrywide.
Total return from export of goods and services is now at 19.1% and at 34.7% on import of goods and services.
Prime Minister Ngirente added that Rwanda has even gone a further step to profit from trade agreements with other African countries, citing the Africa Continental Free Trade Area, which is now guided by the AfCFTA Implementation Strategy, 2022. By November 2022, 44 out of the 54 countries had fully assented to this implementation strategy.
The manufacturing industry increased exports by 21.2% in the first nine months of 2022 due to strong domestic manufacturing activities and the opening up of borders in line with economic recovery.
Rwanda has built 9 Cross Border Markets in Rubavu, Rusizi, Nyamasheke, Nyaruguru, Karongi, kirehe districts and one under construction in Kagitumba (Nyagatare district).
Introduction of Export Growth Fund (EGF) in 2016 for start-ups to produce for export has so far benefited 306 business people.
Adding value to agricultural production
While addressing parliament, the Prime Minister also said that cultivation land for export crops, giving the example of coffee, from 37.373 hectares in 2016/2017 to 39.844 hectares in 2021/2022. While that of tea was increased from 22.446 hectares to 28.858 within the same period.
Government has also provided 50% subsidies in fertilizers and fuel to farmers, owing to the economic crisis caused Russia-Ukraine war. This is aimed to stabilize the ever-increasing consumer prices on the market.
77 cold rooms have been constructed; 50 by the government and 27 by the private sector. Eight silos and 37 bonded warehouses are also in place.
The Government of Rwanda targets to double agriculture sector lending from the current 5.2 per cent of the total share of loans from financial institutions to 10.4 per cent by 2024.