Cross Border Trade (CBT) plays an important role in poverty reduction as it provides trading opportunities for a good number of people in society, particularly women, who are the most active traders along Rwanda’s borders.
The joint United Nations Entity for Gender Equality and the Empowerment of Women (UNWOMEN) and Ministry of Trade and Industry (MINICOM) initiated a project “Support to Women in Informal Cross-Border Trade” to support women in informal cross border trade. The project’s broad outcome areas are; fostering the creation of a supportive environment for Women in Informal Cross-Border Trade (WICBT) and improve their socio-economic wellbeing.
According to the Ministry for Trade and Industry (MINICOM), trading with Frontline Countries like Uganda,Tanzania, Burundi and Congo is estimated to bring in over USD100million.
After noticing the value and speed of development of cross border MINICOM also realized the need for enhancing Cross Border Trade by supporting those involved to shift from informal to formal trade and obeying the rules.
Rwanda exports more than 150 products; hence making cooperation in cross border trade a matter of necessity.
The public is also encouraged to debate CBT so as to have a deeper insight.
Majority of the people involved in cross-border trade in Rwanda lack knowledge of formal and proper channels to use while transacting their businesses. Many of them have been making illegal transactions like smuggling goods inside and outside the country to evade taxes.