Rwamagana banana growers to benefit from paper factory

Rwamagana banana growers to benefit from paper factory

Banana growers in Rwamagana district are set to enjoy double profits from the paper factory to be built in Rubona sector in Rwamagana district.

Rwamagana is known for large scale banana growing. The planned paper factory that will be using banana stems as raw material is expected to cost over Rwf4.7 billion.

According to Nehemie Uwimana, mayor of Rwamagana district said thatthe factory will be using banana plants as the raw materials to make stationery paper and packaging boxes in Rubona sector of Rwamagana district.

 “Farmers are set to make double profits from selling bananas and banana stems,” he added.

Uwimana also explained that through the chamber of commerce at the district, they have the commitment from a Luxembourg-based Erasmus Investment International which will acquire a 75 per cent stake in the plant, while the rest of the shares open for the public to subscribe.

“Rwandans are encouraged to invest in this venture because it is bankable. Each share is worthy Rwf589, 000”. The mayor explained

The mayor also noted that besides promoting social development in the district the factory will employ over 300 residents.

The construction will kick off after environment assessment report is done by REMA officials.

Rwamagana district revealed doors are open to the Rwandans willing to buy shares; one share is Rwf590.000

Apart from paper factory, there is a wine processing factory in Rwamagana where residents sell their banana produce.

Institute of Co-operatives gets Rwf90M support from Germany

Institute of Co-operatives gets Rwf90M support from German

Rwanda Institute of Co-operatives, Entrepreneurship and Microfinance (RICEM) has received equipment worth Rwf90 million from by Germany-based Savings Foundation for International Co-operation (SBFIC).

The equipment includes two omnibuses, eight hi-tech computers, scholastic and other training materials was solicited through the through the Association of Microfinance Rwanda (AMIR).

The Director RICEM, Oscar Bahizi says that the equipment and training materials capacity to train and equip Rwandans with marketable skills.

He said that the institute seeks to promote and provide learning opportunities through continuous education and training to meet diverse strata of the Rwandan human capital.

Capacity building is one of the key challenges of private sector development, and RICEM attempts to promote and provide quality lifelong learning opportunities, through a continuous tailored made education and training road map

The donation comes days after the Rwanda Institute of Cooperatives, Entrepreneurship and Microfinance was launched mid-August 2014, to offer practical skills and education in the areas like entrepreneurship, financial management and accountancy.

The institution will strengthen; conduct research on the capacity building needs for cooperatives, entrepreneurs and microfinance institutions through education, training business advisory services at different levels appropriate for the target groups.

Rwanda is targeting 80 percent financial inclusion by 2017; and according to Rwema, the country’s microfinance sector needs to be equipped to play a critical role to the realization of this objective.

Peter Rwema, AMIR’s programmes director said that the donation will be a boost to the MFI especially professionalism, efficiency and innovation and the country’s microfinance sector needs to be equipped to play a critical role to the realization of this objective.

 

Nyabihu moves to relocate fruit street vendors

Vegetable and fruit sellers in Jenda sector of Nyabihu district are urged to join selling points for organised business and cleanliness

Vegetable and fruit sellers in Jenda sector of Nyabihu district are urged to join selling points for organised business and cleanliness

Fruits and vegetable vendors operating in different sectors of Nyabihu district have been asked to vacate the streets in a bid to stop exposing consumers to health risks.

Angela Mukaminani, vice mayor for economic development in Nyabihu district said that vendors work in an informal economy manner in unregulated and unprotected environment that is not conducive to business and unhealthy of both consumers and sellers.

Vegetable and fruit sellers in Jenda sector of Nyabihu district are urged to join selling points for organised business and cleanliness2

“The move is aimed to end chaos and make sure such traders operate in an organized manner and also this will improve cleanliness.

She added that on top of improving cleanliness, the markets would help to formalize business, a move he said, is good for both consumers and vendors.

Mukaminani also mentioned that the district does not want to see vendors on the streets. “We want them to work in smart places.” she said.

She added this is because operating alongside roads is illegal and exposes consumers to health risks since such places are not hygienic enough.

Making sales out of selling points and markets is illegal

Making sales out of selling points and markets is illegal

In a bid to address the issue, the district constructed selling points for fruits and vegetables in Jomba, Jenda, Rurembo and Kabashuma sector. Other two selling points are still construction.

DHL looks into promoting entrepreneurship in Rwanda

DHL looks into promoting entrepreneurship in Rwanda

By partnering with local entrepreneurs to help them boost their businesses DHL an international courier believes the move will help close the gap of lack of   startup capital to   set up big businesses on the continent mainly in the East African region.

Through reselling DHL services, the  entrepreneur is able to earn a commission something  that  is likely to  help the  local entrepreneurs diversify their business without   having not  inject in money to  buy dealership  as it is done currently.

“It’s really a win-win approach. We having given these small shop owners a unique business opportunity to grow their revenues and gain credibility by aligning themselves with an international brand,”explains Sumesh Rahavendra, head of marketing for DHL Express Sub Saharan Africa.

If they do well, we do well,” he said adding that “These small businesses benefit from commission on all DHL sales, an increase in foot traffic as well as being associated with a global brand”.

Accordingly, all partners are provided with a complete branding kit and go through an extensive training programme to ensure compliance with DHL’s requirements and procedures.

Through, this approach, the company’s number of service points increased from 300 to over 3,300, not by building its own bricks and mortar branches but by partnering with local business owners who act as DHL resellers.

Our retail customers no longer have to sit in traffic to send a document or parcel, but can literally find a DHL service point right around the corner,” says Rahavendra. “Perhaps most gratifying is the fact that we are empowering business owners and aspiring entrepreneurs across Africa with an additional opportunity to earn money and live better.”

Moreover, people relate easily with retailers than branded shops of DHL since they feel close to retailers and believe they are affordable  and  suits in their budget, a challenge  experts  say the continue is still  grappling with.

“Unless, companies understand the clientele they are dealing with, which of course are these who feel inferior to much branding, and then it is really hard to take affordable services close to them,” Damien Ndizeye, Executive Secretary of the country’s Consumer protection body said

Rahavendra says that    in Africa where the informal economy rules, a company’s retail strategy cannot revolve around high-end shopping malls, something he believes opted the company to look into the low end of transaction.

“You have to operate on a level where customers can understand, feel and relate to your product. You really need to ensure that your brand connects to the average person on the street,” concludes Rahavendra.

DHL has also forged similar partnerships with larger companies such as mobile network operators, retail business centers, supermarkets and fuel retailers.

RRA says billing machines increasing tax base

image

Barely six months after the introduction of Electronic Billing Machines, Rwanda revenue authority (RRA) says the results are impressive.

Speaking at this year’s tax payers’ day celebration on Saturday, the commissioner general of RRA, Richard Tushabe, said the machines are helping the government increase its tax base.
The commissioner also said the tools have helped cut down time spent screening books of accounts.

“Auditors used to spend hours investigating and going over massive documentation, but with the EBM, audits are easily conducted,” he said.

Tushabe also said RRA is now able to catch tax evaders with less effort. The same technology is used in countries such as Sweden, Germany, Greece, Ethiopia and Kenya to combat tax evasion.

More than 6000 traders have installed the machines and RRA expects more than 1000 traders to install the machines soon.

Every registered machine records all transactions and indicates Value Added Taxes expected to be remitted to government coffers.

Only businesses with a turnover of at least Rwf 20m (USD 29,000) per year are obliged to use billing machines. Those who don’t are penalized.

RRA predicts an exponential increase in tax collections at the end of the current financial year. Last year’s domestic revenues to the budget was Rwf782.5 billion equivalent to 62%. In financial year 2014/15, collections are projected at Rwf906.8 billion, increased by 16% from last year.

Meanwhile tax payers’ day was celbrated in Kayonza Distrcit, Eastern Province. The Prime Minister, Anastase Murekezi, who presided over the lemony requested Rwandans to fulfill their tax obligations and help the country get rid of dependency on foreign aid.

Bank of Kigali was recognised as the overall tax payer.

By Jean de la Croix Tabaro.

Source : KTPRESS

SMEs tipped on succeeding internationally

SME

Small-and-medium businesses (SMEs) are the main drivers of regional economies, making it important for governments to scale up support to the sector to enhance its capacity.

It’s in this regard that the East African Business Council (EABC) has come up with initiatives to bolster SMEs’ ability to engage in international trade successfully.

On this front, the council will this month meet with the business community to discuss mechanisms on how small-and-medium entrepreneurs can use rules of origin policy to thrive in business.

“The three-day meeting seeks to strengthen SMEs capacity to effectively engage in the development.

“It’s therefore essential that they understand how the rules of origin policy operates if they are to benefit from it,” Andrew Luzze, the executive director East African Business Council (EABC) noted.

According to Luzze, equipping the private sector with the necessary knowledge about the rules of origin arrangement will boost cross-border trade and, ultimately, raise the volumes of intra-regional trade.

Under the rules of origin, goods produced in the region are either zero rated or attract a minimal tax.

Luzze said the training will help raise awareness and build capacity of sector players in the EAC bloc so they harness the opportunities provided by the preferential trade regimes in the region and other trade blocs,” he said.

The training targets the business community and officials from the regional revenue authorities and other government agencies and trade support organisations to enhance their skills and knowledge on the revised EAC rules of origins.

 

Rusizi: Urubyiruko rurasabwa gutangira kwitoza kwihangira imirimo rwitandukanya n’ibiyobyabwenge.

Rusizi

Iyo utembereye hirya no hino mu karere ka Rusizi, cyane cyane mu mujyi wa Rusizi no muri centre z’ubucuruzi zigenda zaguka muri aka karere nka Bugaramarama, Mushaka, Nyakabuye n’ahandi usanga abasore n’inkumi benshi baba biyicariye mu mujyi cyangwa muri centre y’ubucuruzi nta kazi bafite, abandi bahagaze bikoze mu mifuka bavuga ko ari abashomeri barangije amashuri bakabura akazi, mu gihe hari n’abandi baba biriwe bazerera umujyi nta kintu mu by’ukuri bawukoramo, tutibagiwe na bamwe muri urwo rubyiruko baba bacunze uwarangara ngo bamukore mu mufuka, bamucuze ayo yari yazanye guhahisha, cyangwa se ababa bari hirya no hino biyahuza ibiyobyabwenge.

Nyamara nk’uko umuhuzabikorwa w’inama y’igihugu y’urubyiruko mu karere ka Rusizi, Nyandwi Eraste aherutse kubibwira urubyiruko yaganiraga na rwo ku buzima bw’imyororokere no kwikura mu bukene rukihangira imirimo,yarubwiye ko Akarere ka Rusizi kari gafite amahirwe yo kugira urubyiruko rwinshi rufite imbaraga zo gukora kuko ari rwo mizero y’Akarere n’igihugu muri rusange, ariko ngo birababaje kubona umuntu w’umusore yirirwa akina urusimbi cyangwa akirirwa yishora mubiyobyabwege n’ibindi bibi  nk’ibyo, mu gihe yagombye kuba  ashaka umurimo yakora, cyane cyane mu bize, aho kwirirwa umusore cyangwa inkumi bafite imbaraga bazerera ngo ni abashomeri.

Nyandwi Eraste avuga ko ashima  bamwe mu basore n’inkumi usanga baba bishakira icyo bakora, nk’abo usanga bacuruza utuntu n’ubwo twaba duke hirya no hino, abo usanga baramaze kwegera amashuri y’imyuga bakaba begera agakiriro ka Rusizi n’ahandi bakora imyuga  bize, abo usanga bahinga bakanorora kijyambere, abo bose bakaba ari abo gushimirwa kandi bakaba bakwiye kubera  urugero n’urundi rubyiruko rutarumva ko ushaka ikintu cyose abanza gutekereza kandi ko ntacyo umuntu abona kitamuvunnye ,rugafatira amasomo kuri rugenzi rwarwo ruba rugize aho rumaze kugera mu itera mbere.

twaganiriye na bamwe mubasore twasanze bari  kunywa ibiyobyabwenge kumosozi  bahinduye akabari  uri haruguru y’ikiyaga cya Kivu  mu murenge wa Gihundwe  n’isoni nyishi bavugaga ko babuze icyo bakora kuberako ngo badafite aho bahera biteza imbere , tubabajije aho bakura ayo kunywa inzoga basubije ko baba baje kuvumba, abandi bavuga ko aba ari make cyane kuburyo ataba intangiriro yo kwiteza imbere

Murengezi Aimé  umusore wo mu murenge wa Bugarama we avuga ko yarangije amashuri yisumbuye ariko akirangiza kwiga yumvaga ko azahabwa akazi na Leta ariko nyamara ngo amaze imyaka itari mike yaragategereje akakabura.

Nyamara ngo aho amariye kumara imyaka 2 irenga  mu rugo nta n’igiceri cy’ijana yinjiza kandi n’iwabo bakennye, yegereye nyina wabo amuguza amafaranga 200.000 atangira acuruza utuntu duke duke, none ubu  mu myaka 2 gusa amaze acuruza  yamaze kwishyura nyina wabo amafaranga ye, yigurira ikibanza cyo kubaka mo aho mu bugarama,atunze  iwabo, kandi ngo ntiyabura  miliyoni kuri konti.

Ashimira cyane umusaza baturanye wamugiriye inama yo kwikuramo ubunebwe none akaba ageze aho guha urundi rubyiruko ubuhamya bw’iterambere mu manama rukora rukamutumira, akaba yunga mu rya Nyandwi Eraste aho avuga ko urubyiruko rukwiriye gutinyuka rukagira icyo rukora cyaruteza imbere.

Rwanda’s economy maintains 7.4% growth, despite a staggering trade deficit

National-Bank-maintains1

Rwanda’s economy has maintained a steady growth of 7.4% thanks to a booming service industry which rose by 22.4% from 12.6% in the first quarter.

Central Bank Governor, John Rwangombwa said private sector financing grew by 47.8% from 12.4% of 2013 in the same period.

Central bank Chief Economist, Dr. Thomas Kagabo, attributes said liquidity into commercial banks was a major tool that allowed them to lend more and remain stable.

Meanwhile all construction projects that had been put on complete hold at the end of 2013, have contributed 8%. Manufacturing made a turnover of 13.1%.

Rwanda is experiencing growth while recovering from a meltdown that dragged the economy to 4.7% in 2013 due to earlier financial aid cuts.

Governor Rwangombwa said the growth trend is expected continue despite his earlier projection of a 6% growth.

However, despite the positive growth, Rwanda faces a staggering trade imbalance due to increased imports; valued at 75.4% from 72.5% in the same period in 2013.

Revenues from minerals dropped sharply as a result of a fall in global prices and international blockade of African minerals to global markets.

Revenues from major minerals Coltan, Cassiterite and Wolfram drop by 18.6%. Coltan was slapped the sharpest decline of 30.5%, fetching only $41.7m.

Inflation, despite the 1.9% depreciation of local currency against the dollar remained below 5%.

Agriculture that employs 70% of the population, remains an untapped. Rwangombwa said the sector continues to suffer from minimal financing due to its risky nature.  “There is money but agriculture projects are risky…banks are only interested in bankable projects.”

He said efforts to revamp cooperatives (SACCOs) will help increase financing in the sector, especially in mechanized farming.

Rwanda’s coffee export volumes declined by 31.2% blamed on bad weather in the fourth quarter of 2013 coupled with low levels of stock, 2,560T at the end of 2013 compared to 3,262T during the end of 2012. Tea prices this year dropped from $2.85/Kg in January to $2.12/Kg in June leading to contraction of value of tea exports by 10.2% despite a rise of 5.1% in volume.

The decline in tea prices was attributed to a surge in tea supply at the Mombasa auction in Kenya, where 71% of Rwanda’s tea competed with tens of other tea growing countries.

 

Source: KT Press

Micro finance banks get Rwf3.4 bn fund to lift performance outlook 

Micro finance banks get Rwf3

Microfinance Institutions-MFIs are likely to see their profit portfolio surge after  the launch of the Microfinance  challenge fund that is worth  over Rwf 3.4 billion( €3 million).

MFIs have been instrumental in lending to low end borrowers mainly in rural areas in sectors such as agriculture, micro and small medium businesses but have been crippled with low levels of liquidity, technical constraints and management issues.

“The fund   has come at the time when we are  trying to help Microfinance institutions solve the challenges that are making them fail, I believe now  they (MFIs) have reason to increase  financial  inclusion for all, “said  Rita Ngarambe, Executive Secretary ,Association of Micro finance Institutions in Rwanda

Ngarambe said that the fund will also support the recent savings campaign the association has been promoting with MFIs to increase liquidity to lend to more prospective borrowers.

The fund is part of the arrangement between the German Development Bank that has been instrumental in supporting MFIs, the government of Rwanda and Access to Finance Rwanda, a move seen to help Rwanda increase access to Finance for all.

“The facility will help professionalize and strengthen the micro finance sector,” said Klaus Muller, an expert at the German Development Bank-Kfw

The   fragile sector according to experts needs   a lot in terms of capacity building, loan assessment and recovery, management and designing of products that are suitable to the sector’s clientele, challenges that haunt these institutions mainly in rural areas.

Accordingly, the six year fund is expected to be disbursed in two phases to Microfinance institutions mainly in rural areas with the emphasis to expanding access to credit for rural folks.

According to Central bank statistics, the banking sector’s new authorized loans in the first five months of this year increased by 46 percent to Rwf269.79 Billion compared to Rwf185.07 billion recorded in the same period of 2013.

The first phase will focus at funding development projects for women and youth, technical support and training for the Institutions and matching grants.

“When you go to see, the fund tackles critical areas which have been a challenge for the institutions,” John Gabo, a microfinance Institutions   consultant   noted

To access the fund, the benefiting microfinance institutions must have the central Bank’s legal status with a loan portfolio worth Rwf1.5 billion and an active clientele of 3000 clients, a requirement believed to help more people access credit.

 

RRA falls short of set target

Headquarters-for-Rwanda-Revenue-Authority

Failure of some government institutions to submit tax collections and poor accountability by their budget managers have been noted as the cause of Rwanda Revenue Authority’s failure to achieve the set target for the fiscal year 2013/2014; according to RRA Director General Richard Tusabe.

The tax body recorded Rwf759.8 billion in total tax revenue collection which was short of the targeted Rwf782.5 billion.

The tax body chief attributed this laxity to negligence or corruption tendencies among budget officers.

This was one of the many challenges RRA cited as having a huge blow on their annual tax collections targets during a government officials’ tax dialogue last week in Kigali.

Tusabe told participants that they would remind budget managers of their obligations.

According to the recently-released Auditor General’s report, a total of Rwf2.7 billion deducted in taxes by government agencies was not remitted.

This represents an increase of Rwf2.65 billion compared to Rwf52.3 million registered in the 2012/2013 financial year.

Taxes that were not deducted amounted to Rwf592.1 million compared to Rwf564.6 million over the same period.

DorcelleMukashyaka, RRA deputy commissioner in charge of taxpayer services, said all government budget officers were well aware of their responsibilities, adding that though RRA has carried out numerous trainings for budget managers in government institutions, the problem has persisted.

According to the report, taxes that were deducted, but not remitted to RRA include Pay As You Earn (PAYE) amounting to Rwf2.22 billion, while Rwf214.1 million was not deducted at all.

Value Added Tax totaling Rwf77.2 million was not deducted from suppliers, while Rwf15.4 million was deducted but not remitted to RRA by some entities, it indicated.

About Rwf2.2 million was not deducted as 3 per cent withholding tax from suppliers while Rwf1.9 million was deducted, but not remitted to RRA by some agencies. The total sum of Rwf83.7 million was never deducted as 15 per cent withholding tax from service providers.

“The concerned people should answer why they don’t remit the money because the law clearly states that they should deduct and declare to RRA,” Mukashyaka explained.

Nelson Ogara, a senior manager at PricewaterhouseCoopers Rwanda, said failure to remit the taxes to RRA impacts on the economy.

“If the money supposed to be spent by the government is not collected, this creates avoidable shortfall,” he said.

He added that if the money remains on the government treasury account, it would not be used as required to support Rwanda’s economic growth.

The other challenges facing RRA include resistance to use electronic billing machines and online tax payment facilities, a large informal sector, ‘hard to trace’ cash transactions, smuggling and tax evasion.

 

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