The long awaited Rwanda Diaspora Mutual Fund (RDMF) that is set to be operational in three months’ time, has finally got the blessing from the central bank.
The fund that is expected to be launched in time for the Diaspora convention scheduled for December, will be a pool for collective investment in Rwanda by the Diaspora.
According to information available to The New Times, the fund was issued with a provisional license by the National Bank of Rwanda (BNR) early this year.
According to Dr. Emmanuel Ngomiraronka, the provisional license was issued on April 27.
“We will be fully operational, probably, by November or December before the convention because right now we are working on our prospectus,” said Ngomiraronka.
The in-charge of business opportunities in the Foreign Ministry’s Diaspora General Directorate (DGD), Edward Kadozi, said that they appreciate the progress that has been registered.
“So far we have registered the fund as a limited liability company in the Central Bank and they have given us a provisional license and now we are working on the prospectus and business plan which are very important documents for its functioning,” Kadozi said.
“Our hope is that in a period of three months, all will be through and then we’ll launch the fund here (Kigali).”
“Next week, we will have a meeting with promoters in London, the US, Canada and elsewhere to discuss the way forward and wrap up the remaining issues”.
The fund was initially mooted during the 2007 Diaspora retreat that was held in Kigali.
RDMF membership will be open to Diaspora communities, their networks and friends, other Rwandan nationals, foreign nationals, and any other interested parties.
According to the World Bank, Rwandans in the Diaspora remitted over $60 million in 2006 while in 2007 remittances almost doubled to over $110 million.
Central bank reports indicated earlier that the money from abroad increased by 25.8 percent within the first five months of this year, which saw remittances increase to $71.4 million compared to $56.8 million received during the same time last year.
The data is collected from commercial banks, money transfer agents like Western Union, Money Gram and other informal transfers.
Diaspora remittances have become a key foreign exchange earner for Africa with about US$5 billion released every twelve months.