Rwanda targets $1.2bn foreign investment in 2015

2015-07-02 19:01

Multimedia   ·   User Galleries   ·   News in Pictures Send us your pictures  ·  Send us your stories

Kigali - Rwanda aims to increase foreign direct investment in 2015 to $1.2bn, a fourfold jump from two years ago, helped by a new investment code that offers tax breaks and other incentives, a senior official said on Thursday.

World Bank rankings show Rwanda is one of the easiest places to do business in Africa, after Mauritius and South Africa, but the country has struggled to meet past investment targets.

While setting up a new business is simple, running an operation can soon prove challenging, investors say. Some complain that state-backed firms squeeze out competition.

"This year we aim to achieve $1.2bn worth of private investment into the economy and to grow that annually by 20%," Francis Gatare, chief executive of the state's Rwanda Development Board, told a meeting of local businesspeople.

Economic growth ambitions

"That's an ambitious target we've given ourselves based on the broader objectives of our economic growth ambitions."

In 2013, the latest year for which figures are available, foreign direct investment in Rwanda was $257m.

Long praised by Western and other donors for rebuilding swiftly after the 1994 genocide, Rwanda has been aiming for double digit economic growth. Although it has not attained that level, the economy managed 7% in 2014.

Rwanda published a new investment code in the official gazette in May, outlining incentives that included a seven-year corporate tax holiday to firms investing at least $50m, of which 30% was equity in strategic sectors.

The sectors included manufacturing, tourism, health, information technology, other export-oriented industry and energy projects with capacity of at least 25 megawatts (MW).

Incentives to those investing $50m or more were designed to attract large single investments "that can have bigger and sustained impact to the economy," Gatare said, adding the sectors were ones expected to have "wider multiplier effects".

Rwandan officials have said more investment and spurring on growth would help wean the country off foreign aid, which now accounts for almost 40% of the annual budget although the proportion has been gradually falling in recent years.

Read more on:    rwanda  |  east africa

Join the conversation! encourages commentary submitted via MyNews24. Contributions of 200 words or more will be considered for publication.

We reserve editorial discretion to decide what will be published.
Read our comments policy for guidelines on contributions.
NEXT ON NEWS24X publishes all comments posted on articles provided that they adhere to our Comments Policy. Should you wish to report a comment for editorial review, please do so by clicking the 'Report Comment' button to the right of each comment.

Comment on this story
1 comment
Comments have been closed for this article.

Inside News24

Traffic Alerts
There are new stories on the homepage. Click here to see them.


Create Profile

Creating your profile will enable you to submit photos and stories to get published on News24.

Please provide a username for your profile page:

This username must be unique, cannot be edited and will be used in the URL to your profile page across the entire network.


Location Settings

News24 allows you to edit the display of certain components based on a location. If you wish to personalise the page based on your preferences, please select a location for each component and click "Submit" in order for the changes to take affect.

Facebook Sign-In

Hi News addict,

Join the News24 Community to be involved in breaking the news.

Log in with Facebook to comment and personalise news, weather and listings.