KIGALI - The World Bank Group has awarded Rwanda for being the top global reformer in Doing Business.
The trophy was, yesterday, handed to the Minister of Commerce, Monique Nsanzabaganwa, on behalf of the Rwandan government by Jean Phillipe Prosper, the IFC Director, Eastern and Southern Africa.
Rwanda is the first ever Sub-Saharan African country, ranked 67th in the 2009 Doing Business report, up from 150th the previous year. The massive improvement, that is based on the number and impact of reforms implemented between June 2008 and May 2009, made her the world’s top reformer.
The ceremony coincided with the launch of the Investment Climate Assessment Report at the World Bank offices in Kigali.
Clare Akamanzi, the COO of Rwanda Development Board (RDB) highlighted the journey to being the top reformer, mentioning the five laws that enabled a favourable environment for doing business in the country.
The reforms that were prioritised include property registration that moved to 27th, up from 171th the previous year, starting a business moved from 64th position to 11th with only two procedures and three days to start a business.
Other reforms that contributed to the big leap is the consolidation of procedures to have a company registered with only one step and access to finance improved from 147th in 2008 to 61th position last year.
“It’s not about Doing Business but its impact on the economy and also the response from the private sector,” Akamanzi said.
After the reforms, it is said that projects implemented in one year were as many as those implemented in the last five years and revenue increased from $800m to $1.1 billion.
Akamanzi said that a platform, the National Public Private Dialogue (NPPD), had been created to discuss and use the feedback to identify challenges and accelerate reforms.
“The reforms and achievement is beyond ranking, but an inspiration to other countries and for broader investment,” Prosper said.
He added that the achievement is attributed to the government’s commitment and clear objectives, adding that continued cooperation is essential to accelerate the reforms.
He acknowledged that many countries where, the Multilateral Investment Guarantee Agency (MIGA), IFC and WB operate were inspired by Rwanda’s achievement.
Nsanzabaganwa promised to ensure that reforms bear fruits and increase Foreign Direct Investments as well as local investments.
“The award is attributed to the President Paul Kagame who knew the importance of doing business and quickly challenged the entire government,” Nsanzabaganwa said.