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High Commission of Republic of Rwanda Republic of Uganda


Manufacturers and business experts have called on the government and the private sector to do more to boost Small and Medium Enterprises to significantly bridge the country’s trade deficit.

They made the call yesterday during a Made-in-Rwanda Symposium organised by the Private Sector Federation (PSF) in partnership with the Ministry of Trade, Industry and EAC Affairs (MINEACOM).

They contended that effective economies of scale coupled with quality assurance in the manufacturing industry would result in low production costs and affordable products, hence recapturing the local market and promoting the country’s exports.

Rwanda’s imports are four times its exports in value, according to information from Rwanda Development Board (RDB).

Janvier Ndayirata, the managing director of Real Packaging Manufactures Ltd, said proper packaging was important in the promotion of exports as it contributes to the competitiveness of a product.

He, however, expressed concerns over lack of sufficient means to meet the demand.

“Setting up a packaging factory is expensive. We have had over 10,000 demands from various sectors, including construction and agro-processing, but we cannot satisfy such demand because our production capacity falls short,” Ndayirata said

“We need to produce at least nine tonnes of processed paper bags per day, translating into 342,000 paper bags, but our production capacity is only three tonnes daily.”

He added that financial institutions were not doing enough to finance SMEs to acquire advanced manufacturing technologies.

Michel Makolo, the managing director of Ruliba Clays Ltd that manufactures tiles and bricks, said: “If we could produce at a large scale, we can sell and export more. We will bring down our production costs and our clients will be able to get more affordable products.”

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