2010 was another successful year for Rwanda Development Board, which started with very ambitious but achievable targets of promoting the government’s vision of creating a private sector driven economy that will enable Rwanda to become a leading destination for investments. Various milestones were registered as outlined below;
According to the 2010 World Bank Doing Business Report, Rwanda was once again among top ten global reformers coming up as second global reformer out of 183 countries. Rwanda is the 9th easiest place to start a business in the world and the 6th most competitive economy in Sub-Saharan Africa according to the 2010 World Economic Forum global Competitiveness Report.
Business and Investments Registered
6,207 companies were registered compared to 5,808 that were registered in 2009. Key investment projects in the pipeline include the reputable global hospitality brand of Marriott and Hilton group of Hotels.
RDB in collaboration with Rwandan High commission in India organized a Road show to India that attracted over 20 inward missions, delegations/ individual companies including signing an MoU with Universal Empire Infrastructures (UEIL) Ltd that pledged to invest over 250 million USD projects in Eastern province Bugesera district where the will set up a knowledge hub and integrated food processing park next to the proposed new airport
On 15th October 2010, a Canopy walk in Nyungwe National Park, which is the first of its kind in Eastern Africa was launched and will provide a cutting edge to visitors that experience the park from a new vantage point from 60 meters above ground. A unique interactive interpretation centre was unveiled in Nyungwe and is now operational.
Conservation: Over 50 projects worth 305 Million Frw was disbursed towards development of community projects around parks from the annual Revenue Sharing Scheme which grants 5% of park revenues towards supporting community projects. In 2011, other 49 projects worth 202M Frw will be funded towards improving community welfare
A Gorilla Census conducted in April 2010 in the Virunga Massif confirms a 26.3 % increase in the population of mountain gorillas, Gorilla beringei beringei, in this area over the last seven years, with a 3.7 % annual growth rate
Significant development has been registered in the areas of ICT infrastructure, capacity building, and public sector service delivery using ICTs. The following are some of the highlights:
Rollout of over 2,300Km of fiber optic cable around the country including cross-border fiber installation at Uganda and Tanzania borders has been completed. This infrastructure will provide access to affordable, high–speed internet connectivity as well as enhancing efficient service delivery in public and private sectors. 69% of central government institutions connected to fiber in Kigali have been migrated to Kigali Metropolitan Network (KMN) and are operational.
Human Capacity and Institutional Development (HCID)
Trade and Manufacturing
Exports increased by 23.8 % in 2010 compared to the year 2009. Registered exports in 2010 are estimated at 454,457,389 US$ compared to 366,875,035 US$ generated in 2009. Tourism dominated with 44.0 % of total exports, followed by Mining and Coffee with 14.9 % and 12.3 % respectively.
Imports recorded in 2010 indicate a 11.4 % increase compared to 2009. Registered imports in 2010 are estimated at 1,389,382,945 US$ compared to 1,246,813,601 US$ registered in 2009.
Other achievements include promotion of products of 40 local companies internationally, introduction of up of 30 operational Business Development Centers (BDCs) in 30 Districts that have facilitated training for 400 entrepreneurs trained in business planning and ICT training for 270 District staff and 450 women in 28 Districts.
Major Events concluded
Kwita Izina was another major success-with 14 baby gorillas given names as part of the celebration of the World Environment day on June 5th 2010. The event attracted hundreds of international visitors including renowned Hollywood film star Don Cheadle, scores of top government officials, thousands of Rwandans and hundreds of international media.
FESPAD was successfully organized for the first time by RDB from July 24th-31st 2010. A number of concerts countrywide were well attended with over 200,000fans in participation attracting renowned artists like Grammy Award Winner Lauryn Hill, Mike E, Afroflow and over 10 the region’s best artists.
RDB Awards: RDB held the annual Business Excellence awards for the second time to recognize the achievement of businesses, individuals and SME’s that made an outstanding contribution to Rwanda’s economic growth with new categories introduced notably; Business friendly district and Woman Entrepreneur of the year.
Looking forward to 2011, RDB has raised the bar to even greater heights focusing generating tourism revenues estimated at 216MUSD and attracting investment projects worth 550M USD. Among the strategies in place to achieve the mentioned targets includes attracting investment from new economic power houses such as Asia as well as incorporating more regulatory and legal reforms that support the private sector growth.
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