Business round up

Banking population increases by 20 percent The number of Rwandans that have access to banking services increased to 2.5 million people last year from 2.1 million in 2008 following the restructuring of Banque Populaire du Rwanda (BPR), the Central Bank said Wednesday. François Kanimba, the Governor of the National Bank of Rwanda (NBR) also attributed the drastic rise to the expansion of commercial banks.

Banking population increases by 20 percent

The number of Rwandans that have access to banking services increased to 2.5 million people last year from 2.1 million in 2008 following the restructuring of Banque Populaire du Rwanda (BPR), the Central Bank said Wednesday.

François Kanimba, the Governor of the National Bank of Rwanda (NBR) also attributed the drastic rise to the expansion of commercial banks.

“Commercial banks opened up a chain of branches across the country which attracted people to adopt the culture of banking,” Kanimba said.

A survey conducted by FINSCOPE in 2008, revealed that only 21 percent of Rwandan population embraced the services offered by commercial banks and Microfinance Institutions (MFIs).

The survey indicated that the overwhelming barrier to banking is related to low income levels.

Central Bank to spend $8m on ICT modernization
In a bid to modernize its services, the National Bank of Rwanda (NBR) projects to spend $8m on ICT infrastructure modernization project.

Governor of the Central Bank Francois Kanimba, said the major areas to be considered in this project include core banking system, automation of the whole accounting system and computerizing documents to reduce paper work.

“In the last 20 years, the Central Bank was regarded as the modern institution with most sophisticated IT equipment but now we are among those who are lugging behind in ICT modernization,” Kanimba said.

MTN to cut its investment by 55 percent

MTN Rwanda has said that it will slash its total annual investment by 55 percent to $45m (Rwf25.6 billion) this year.

“There’s no need to invest heavily in building capacity and coverage every year, what we did in 2009 can serve in 2010 and what is required now is to maintain what we built last year,” the company’s CEO, Khaled Mikkawi, told Business Times in an interview.

MTN Rwanda’s investment into its operations and network upgrading has seen a sharp rise in the recent past, reaching $100 million (Rwf56.9 billion) in 2009.

Mikkawi said that 2009 was dedicated to expansion in the much needed coverage and capacity.

The CEO explained that this year the company will focus on attracting more subscribers by introducing new promotions so as to make a full utilisation of the company’s network capacity.

Nakumatt registers a shoplifter every day on average.

Nakumatt Rwanda says that it is battling the increasing number of shoplifters.

The retail subsidiary of Kenya’s Nakumatt Supermarket says that at least one shoplifting case is registered everyday.
“On average we register 25-30 cases of shoplifting per month and we take necessary measures,” said Adan Ramata, Nakumatt’s Country Manager.

However, the behaviour had significantly gone down given the fact that in the past, shoplifting cases were as high as 50 people per month.

Ramata says that people steal all sorts of products ranging from alcohol, food stuff, and soft drinks among others.

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