Rwanda has embarked on an 11-year industrial Master Plan that will see the country revamp and rejuvenate the manufacturing sector to make it more sustainable and development oriented, officials have confirmed.
Speaking to The New Times in Kigali, the Industrial Development Officer at the Ministry of Trade and Industry, Annoncée Kuradusenge said that the Rwanda Industrial Master Plan (RIMP) running from 2009 to 2020 focuses on how to revamp, develop and sustain the Country’s Manufacturing Sector over a medium and long term period, in line with Vision 2020.
The Government adopted the plan after carrying out a review of the manufacturing sector’s growth trend that has on average been 7 percent over the past 5 years and drafted the RIMP to act as a guideline and a set of strategies/measures that will both sustain this growth and qualitatively improve the sector’s contribution to Rwanda’s Gross Domestic Product and Exports.
“We have already started on the implementation of the plan and we are targeting all provinces in the country where at least two industries will be established in each district depending on the resources and raw materials in each of the districts,” said Kuradusenge.
According to the Ministry, the pilot project will centre on the establishment of agro-based industries aimed at adding value to agricultural produce before it goes to the market and at a later stage, industrial zones will be established in all provinces to cater for all manufacturing needs.
“We are doing a conceptual study to see how we can involve all sectors, especially the private sector, and how we can create capacity to empower people at all levels to participate in the implementation of this plan,” she added.
She said that among other things, the new government plan is also seeking to improve quality of Rwandan products in order to enable competition on the international market by increasing their demand and value.
“In this plan we intend to brand Rwandan products by international standards to increase exports while reducing on imports” said Kuradusenge as she shed more light on the comprehensive plan the government intends to undertake to revolutionalise the industrial sector as a backbone of the economy.
The new plan is also aimed at liberalising the economy to make it more independent and less reliant on aid and imported goods, some of which can be manufactured locally using local raw materials.
It will also root for innovativeness and use of applied ICT in production while seeking local and international markets for Rwandan products.
According to the commerce ministry, plans to establish relevant infrastructure and facilities relevant to the implementation of the industrial master plan such as roads, have been finalised and will take full course as soon as the plan gets cabinet approval before the end of this month.
“The implementation is already underway though the cabinet has to approve some of the issues in the 169-page Master Plan, but it has already been endorsed,” Kuradusenge revealed.
Some of the targets the new plan seeks to achieve include improving the income to $900 Per Annum by 2020 and at least 26 percent contribution to national GPD by the industrial sector as well as a per capita export Ratio of US$ 200 by 2012, according to the trade Ministry.
The plan that will be funded by the government and other development stakeholders is part of the move by the government to shift from an agro-based economy and diversify more into industry and manufacturing.