Golden Circle eyes agric, energy sector opportunities

The Golden Circle, a group of investors under the Private Sector Federation (PSF), is looking to tap into the investment opportunities in the key priority sectors of the economy to support government’s push to create 200,000 off-farm jobs per year.
The Golden Circle members say they are looking to support infrastructure development, especially energy and roads. They also want to invest more in the agriculture sector to boost its exports. (File)
The Golden Circle members say they are looking to support infrastructure development, especially energy and roads. They also want to invest more in the agriculture sector to boost its exports. (File)

The Golden Circle, a group of investors under the Private Sector Federation (PSF), is looking to tap into the investment opportunities in the key priority sectors of the economy to support government’s push to create 200,000 off-farm jobs per year. The targets of the second Economic Development and Poverty Reduction Strategy (EDPRS II) is increase the level of industrialisation in the country and create 200,000 off-farm jobs per year.

The Golden Circle, which was formed in 2013, comprises of over 100 companies, is an advocacy group that lobbies government for better business environment and incentives for members. One parts with an annual fee of Rwf5 million to be member of the PSF affiliated body.

Speaking to Business Times yesterday, Stephen Ruzibiza, the PSF chief executive officer, said the group now wants to do more than advocacy by participating in the government’s development plans and creating business-to-business linkages to foster growth.

“If the Ministry of Agriculture and Animal Resources has idle land, let it give it to the Golden Circle companies to use to produce efficiently. This will also save government funds that would have been invested in it and the risks involved,” he said.

Last week during a meeting with the private sector, the agriculture ministry informed the Golden Circle firms that there are investment opportunities in the agriculture sector, which they can exploit to expand the country’s exports.

Tony Nsanganira, the agriculture state minister, said there are opportunities in poultry and dairy farming, as well as vegetable farming, and beef and grains production.

Resolutions from the meeting organised by PSF included a commitment by the firms to invest more in the agriculture sector and ensure that the country attains 8 per cent growth rate per year under EDPRS II. Ruzibiza revealed that they were organising a similar dialogue with the Ministry of Infrastructure to see how the firms would contribute to the development of sectors, like energy production and roads.

“The main idea is having more linkages. If these businesses see an extra hand helping them to expand their linkages, like in the last meeting with the agriculture ministry, they will raise the required funds to invest in some of the projects therein,” he explained. He said the PSF secretariat facilitates firms to identify opportunities in different ministries, where they can invest.

Member firms of the Golden Circle include Bralirwa, I&M Bank Rwanda, Development Bank of Rwanda, Magerwa, UAP Insurance Rwanda, Corar Insurance, Deloitte, Lemigo Hotel, Wolfram Mining and Processing, KK Security, Tigersoft, Soras and British American Tobacco.           

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