The East African Community (EAC) Industry Development Strategy, a regional initiative that aims to provide an anchor for supporting growth and developing regional industries, is set to boost Rwanda’s potential industrial sector, the Ministry of Trade and Industry has said.
Rwanda is currently engaged in the numerous national consultative workshops on the formulation of a harmonized EAC industrial development policy that is possibly expected to strengthen national industrial initiatives.
“With industry policy harmonization, challenges such as non-tariff barrier would be dealt with and would attract heavy foreign investment as one block,” said Canisius Karuranga, head of Industrial and Trade Observatory in the Ministry of Trade and Industry.
Karuranga said this on Tuesday at Top Tower Hotel during the rotational national workshops on EAC industrial development policy.
“This initiative will see us add value to our exports, improve quality and standards as well as increase the volume of trade amongst the member states,” he added.
His remarks come at a time the EAC inter-trade as a share of the region’s overall trade is still tiny at only 10 percent.
Karuranga said that with Rwanda’s industrial sector being relatively recent, modest and dominated by Small and Medium Enterprises (SMEs), the regional initiative could help member countries transform their industry sector.
Official figures suggest that the share of Rwanda’s industrial sector to Gross Domestic Product (GDP) is estimated at 15 percent, less than half the size of the service and agricultural sectors.
Manufacturing, which is export oriented, represents about 10 percent of GDP and contributes about 5 percent of total exports.
The ongoing national consultative workshops on the development of the industrial strategy seek the views of donors, ministries and the private sector on how the policy can be developed and implemented.