Thumbs up for Riepa, raise the bar in 2008

Rwanda Investment and Export Promotion Agency (Riepa)’s investment status report shows that 2007 is another year of investment growth in the country. The service, manufacturing and mining sectors attracted more projects, created more jobs and registered the highest capital investment.

Rwanda Investment and Export Promotion Agency (Riepa)’s investment status report shows that 2007 is another year of investment growth in the country. The service, manufacturing and mining sectors attracted more projects, created more jobs and registered the highest capital investment.

These are signs that the country is increasingly becoming an investment destination as its image abroad changes – from one associated with the atrocities of 1994 (Genocide) to that of a ‘must-be-there’ for investors.

This positive image built over the last 13 years has seen 123 new projects worth Frw271b ($50 million) registered. However 52 percent of these projects are local, which means there is still much to do to woo more foreign investors with deeper pockets to pump money into the economy to spur rapid economic development.

This campaign must be collective. We do not need an expert to do this. Already the country’s central location in the heart of Africa, peace, zero tolerance to corruption, good investment climate, a market of 120 million people in the East African Community, coupled with the scantly exploited opportunities and emerging ones, make Rwanda the best investment destination for the future.

Such investors as Dubai World – a United Arab Emirates Investment arm – which recently announced plans to invest a record $230 million investment in about eight hospitality ventures in the country, Allied Technologies (Altech), a South African tech giant, which won the tender to wire up major Rwandan cities with broadband connection, and many prospective foreign firms show that the future is brighter if only we all stay the course.

Indeed, there are major steps being taken to create even better investment environment, including putting in place legal instruments that would see the opening of commercial courts which will in the effect address disputes arising from this crucial sector.
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