Rwanda’s sovereign wealth fund, Agaciro Development Fund, has grown to Rwf52.3billion, up from around Rwf20 billion when it was launched in 2012.
The revelation was made last week by the Fund’s Chief Executive Officer, Jack Kayonga, in an exclusive interview with The New Times.
Agaciro’s current Rwf52.3 billion include Rwf41.8 billion collected from contributors towards the wealth fund, while the rest of the money (Rwf10.5billion) is from returns made on the Fund’s investments.
Rwandans of all walks of life and friends of Rwanda have been contributing towards the Fund since it was established by the Government to secure a brighter future for the citizens.
Since 2014, the Fund’s managers have been investing the money collected to increase it, mainly buying the government’s profitable Treasury Bonds (T-Bonds) and making long term deposits in commercial banks.
Kayonga said that much as he appreciates the Fund’s growth so far, he also describes it as still modest and urged Rwandans to revive the momentum of giving to the Fund so it can grow further.
“It’s still modest growth given that other sovereign wealth funds elsewhere in Africa are generally over $1 billion,” he said.
He said that a number of initiatives will be undertaken by Fund’s managers in the future in order to increase its funds such as targeting working Rwandans in different sectors so they can make their contributions.
“It is a modest achievement and it is nowhere close to what the principle (President Paul Kagame) expects of us. We are looking at different ways of growing the Fund further,” he said.
In 2013, Agaciro was valued at Rwf20.5 billion before growing to Rwf46 billion by the end of last year.
The Fund continues to attract government’s attention as a credible funds manager for the public wealth and The New Times has learned that the Government recently put the management of its shares in nearly thirty companies under the sovereign wealth fund’s management.
Kayonga revealed that a number of government shares in companies such as Bank of Kigali and Kinazi Cassava Plant, among others, have been placed under the management of Agaciro Development Fund.
The Fund’s officials revealed that it currently has a growth rate of Rwf3 billion in new contributions every year while it also gets annual revenues from returns on investments that are about 9 to 10 per cent of the money invested every year.
Agaciro is Rwanda’s sovereign wealth fund initiated in 2011 to mobilise funds to help the country achieve self-reliance, maintain stability in times of shocks to the national economy and accelerate Rwanda’s socio-economic development goals.
In September this year, the Fund acquired full membership of the International Forum of Sovereign Wealth Funds (IFSWF).