Some 6,000 shares of Cimerwa each at Rwf120 were on Monday, August 3, sold as the firm started trading on the Rwanda Stock Exchange (RSE). Cimerwa, Rwanda’s biggest cement maker, listed all its shares (703,219,520) on the local bourse. However, only 344,575,560 shares or 49 per cent of them are available for trading through free float. Commenting on the development, the CEO of Rwanda Development Board (RDB), Clare Akamanzi, predicted better performance of Cimerwa shares, saying that the firm had made strong economic contribution to the country through its products, employment and numerous corporate social responsibilities activities. “We look forward to more local brands to list on the stock exchange. Cimerwa is a good example of a solid ‘made in Rwanda’ brand,” Akamanzi said. She further explained that a robust and active stock exchange will enhance Rwanda’s attractiveness as an investment destination. On the other hand, Akamanzi also challenged investors to make an attempt and seize the opportunity citing that Cimerwa is one of the firms with a strong future prospect. For instance, she said, beyond 2020, Rwanda projects strong GDP growth. “Strong GDP growth means a strong infrastructure sector, which is mainly facilitated by the cement industry.” Rwanda’s per capita cement consumption is too low currently at 57kg, she said, while the world average is close to 400kg per capita. “This means that there is potential for (industry) growth going forward.” Some of the major infrastructure projects highlighted include, construction of a proposed airport in Bugesera, more classrooms, power plants, water treatment plants, satellite cities among others. Cimerwa’s listing, according to Albert Sigei, the firm’s Chief Executive Officer, goes beyond just the equity transaction. “It is the fulfilment of yet another milestone in Cimerwa’s long-term plans that was made possible by a number of background conditions that have facilitated our success,” he said. Key among these he explained, is Rwanda’s stable macro-economic indicators, robust governance and transformation agenda which have provided an enabling environment for the cement sector to thrive with steady annual growth. “This sets a sound basis for the sector’s future potential,” he said. “For us as a company, this transaction is the perfect platform for us to rearm our pledge to our loyal customers and stakeholders. We will continue to provide you with the best quality solutions as we work together in strengthening Rwanda.” Eric Bundungu, the Acting Executive Director of Capital Markets Authority (CMA), said; “I want to thank Cimerwa’s commitment to be part of the development of our capital market industry, financial sector and definitely Rwanda’s economy at large.” He added; “The Capital Market Authority, in collaboration with RSE and our licensed intermediary’s community will continue developing and deepening further our domestic capital market.” Cimerwa became the tenth firm to list its shares on RSE.