The United Kingdom (UK) through the Department for International Development (DFID) has approved £2m to support the implementation of Rwanda’s integration strategy and regional trade facility.
The facility was signed yesterday between head of DFID in Rwanda Elizabeth Carriere and John Rwangombwa, the Finance and Economic Planning Minister in Kigali.
Rwangombwa said the finances will facilitate easy movement of goods and thus position Rwanda to be a key player in economic integration.
“The aid will support Rwanda in moving ahead with its priority of regional integration and trade,” Carriere said.
Carriere also added that the UK will support Rwanda through government ministries involved in regional integration to help the country get maximum benefits from regional integration.
The funds will be channelled through the Ministries of East African Community (MINEAC) and Ministry of Trade and Industry (MINICOM).
Carriere noted that the funds will help MINEAC develop additional policy related to regional integration in areas of communication and monitoring. It will also boost regional trade by removing Non-Tariff Barriers, to reduce costs to Rwandan business.
A statement availed by both parties said the aid will boost East African programmes that work on reducing costs of doing business on regional transport corridors and also to develop one-stop border posts and customs systems. The aid also helps national governments implement regional integration reforms.
She said that Rwanda plays a key role in accelerating regional integration in East Africa, and added that the UK is committed to supporting Rwanda in improving competitiveness and access to markets for its goods in both regional and global markets.
“On average almost 40 percent of the value of any goods imported to Rwanda is a transport cost,” she said.
The three year aid will be followed by assistance in developing standard harmonisation and non tariff barrier removal whose design will be finalized in August this year.