Government has extended, by two years, the Manufacturing and Build to Recover Programme, which is aimed at fast-tracking private sector investments in manufacturing and construction and boosting economic recovery from Covid-19 efforts. The programme, which was introduced in 2020 and was initially supposed to last two years, offers specific incentives for businesses in these two key sectors with the aim of reducing the import-export gap, among others. ALSO READ: Incentives for manufacturing attract $1.2bn in investments It is also aimed at stimulating economic activity through job creation. “We continue to support the private sector to recover from effects of Covid-19 and continue to expand their businesses and that is why we recently decided to extend the programme by two more years,” said Prime Minister Edouard Ngirente. He was addressing the National Umushyikirano Council which started on Monday, February 27, at Kigali Convention Centre, bringing together senior government officials, civil society and members of the general public to discuss matters of national concern. The dialogue, which is provided for in the constitution, is being followed live by Rwandans in the country and in the diaspora. Ngirente, who was outlining the government activities since the last Umushyirano was held in 2019, said that the programme has attracted more than 100 investments which are valued at $1.8 billion and expected to employ more than 36,000 people. Initially, the programme was anticipated to lead to more than $1 billion worth of investments as well as create more than 27,000 jobs, projections that have both been surpassed as per the figures provided by the head of government. The programme targets agro-processing, mainly those involved in value addition in agriculture, light manufacturing which looks at those producing light consumer goods such as soaps, toiletries among others. The third area is construction materials with an aim of incentivizing the building industry which is a major driver of jobs.