Gov’t pledges to facilitate investment in agriculture

The Government of Rwanda will adopt measures to encourage investment flows in the agriculture sector, a top official said yesterday.
Official inspecting some of Rwanda’s agricultural products, yesterday, during the agribusiness investment forum (photo / T. Kisambira)
Official inspecting some of Rwanda’s agricultural products, yesterday, during the agribusiness investment forum (photo / T. Kisambira)

The Government of Rwanda will adopt measures to encourage investment flows in the agriculture sector, a top official said yesterday.

The Permanent Secretary in the Ministry of Infrastructure, Claire Mukasine, said government will put up the necessary infrastructure that is required to attract and sustain the much needed investments to commercialise the sector.

“The aim is to supply, cost-effective and appropriate energy services to households and to all economic sectors on a sustainable basis,” she said.

The PS made the remarks during the opening of a two-day high level agribusiness investment forum in Kigali.

Her affirmation comes amidst reports that Rwanda has one of the highest electricity tariffs in the region. The Economic Consulting Associates (ECA) Ltd said last month that an ordinary Rwandan customer pays Rwf132 (22 USc) per/kWh plus VAT, higher than what their regional counterparts in Kenya and Uganda pay. 

The conference aims at forging partnerships between local producers, foreign buyers, investors, and financiers as well as the donor community to stimulate growth and increase trade flows in the sectors.

Government allocated 16. 7 percent of the overall 2010/11 budget to infrastructure development, where energy and water were allocated 9.2 percent, transport 4.5 percent and the rest 3 percent.

In her presentation, Mukasine said priority will be given to connection of industries, social institutions like health centres, schools and targeting 100 percent access of all institutions by 2015.  By 2017, it’s expected, that 50 percent will have access to electricity through grid extension and intensification.

In a similar move, investors were provided with detailed soil information and extensively studied, detailed interactive soil maps, developed in partnership with European research institutes.

Government has also recognized the benefits of product testing and certification where Rwanda Bureau of Standards certified  about 21 products in the last 6 months and targeting  55 by June next year.

It’s projected that by 2015,78 percent of the national roads and 60 percent  of district roads will be in good condition as opposed to the current 54 percent of national classified and 23 percent of district classified roads that are in good condition.

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