Government increase petty cash budget

Government increase petty cash budget

Government has increased petty cash funds for public offices from Rwf100.000 to 500.000 as per the ministerial order N°001/16/10/TC of 26/01/2016, as indicated in Article 42 of the national gazette.

The directives were released on February 3, 2016 and presume immediate implementation by law.

This comes into place replacing the older one n°002/07 of 09/02/2007 and the order states that no petty cash should more than that amount

The second part of the order says that there is nothing that is above Rwf50.000 should be purchased with hard cash from the funds.

The development has been highly welcomed by several civil servants who say that their service delivery will be improved and public offices will be able to deliver well.

“We are so glad that the new directives will bring change in our workplaces. Some of our activities have been hampered because of lack of financial capacity that was limited by available funds” one of the civil servants told this website.

The approved and gazetted ministerial decree was prepared by Minister of Finance and Economic Planning Claver Gatete, and approved by the Minister of Justice and Attorney General, Johnson Busingye.

RRA, Kabarondo residents in row over land taxes

RRA commissioner general, Richard Tusabe

RRA commissioner general, Richard Tusabe

Residents in Kabarondo town, Kayonza district have decried the government’s intent to tax their land at a time when they have spent four years without paying taxes.

The residents, especially in the urban designated zones of the district say that local leaders had earlier communicated that their land would be exempted from tax,

Now tax body- Rwanda Revenue Authority (RRA) is demanding for the arrears and additional delay penalties, which residents say that they cannot afford whatsoever.

Eulade Rwigema, one of the affected residents said; “We have land titles which we signed on and the tick-box area for taxes indicated that no tax was to be paid…now we have arrears which we cannot afford”

Kayonza district Mayor, Mugabo John, said in response that this issue was caused by the delayed approval of tax regimes by the district advisory council

RRA commissioner general, Richard Tusabe, says that this issue is going to be discussed and revisited at the national level so as to come with concrete sollutions.

These complaints also come at a time when the RRA tax body has tendered Ngali Holdings-a local investment company to conduct tax collection activates in all 30 districts on its behalf as a way of improving tax bases in the countryside.

In 2015, the ministry of Local government asked the tax body to relax the tax rates and put levels of taxes according to the incomes of some citizens a fact that could be the cause of failure to raise the current land taxes.

EBM users get rewarded

m_3

Fifty business men and women in Rubavu district have been rewarded for using and implementing the use of Electronic Billing Machines (EBM) which were introduced and the new tax and receipt system which was introduced last year.

The EBM lottery, sponsored by the Rwanda Revenue Authority is part of the agenda aimed at encouraging Rwandans to ask for receipts whenever they conduct any business transaction.

So far 200 persons have been rewarded since July 2015, with prizes ranging from TV sets, cash prizes and Cars.

One of the lucky winners, Phocas Twagirayezu, a university student said that his luck of winning is because he participates in government programs and knows the value of accountability.

“Whenever I conduct business with traders I ask for a receipt, if the trader cannot provide one, I find another trader who does. This is because I value taxes as a source of development” Twagirayezu said.

Rwanda Revenue Authority has taken its campaign to schools and has tasked university students to sensitise the public about Value Added Tax as part of efforts to scale up the use of electronic billing machines (EBM) by tax payers.

Buisnesses which are supposed to comply by the EBM system include traders with businesses of Rwf5 million in a business quarter, mainly small-and-medium entrepreneurs, and those with business turn over above Rwf20million a year.

A total of 8,096 VAT-registered taxpayers had acquired EBMs as of June 30, 2015 reflecting a 67.9 per cent increase from 4,821 same period in 2014.

Currently, there are over 12,000 VAT-registered taxpayers, 8,623 of whom have EBMs with the total number of the machines distributed at 10,054.

Relief as inflation eases

Relief as inflation eases

Falling inflation has offered relief to consumers ahead of festive season

Consumers are set to enjoy cheaper prices on the market after the National Institute of Statistics of Rwanda (NISR) announced a slight decrease in inflation.

The country’s inflation declined to 4.5 percent in December, 2015 lower than 4.8 percent recorded in November, 2015 but higher than 2.9 percent recorded in October the same year.

On a monthly basis, the Urban Consumer Price Index-CPI  which  is the main gauge of inflation declined by 0.5 percent in December 2015 due to a fall of 1.9 percent decline in Food and non-alcoholic beverages.

The National institute of Statistics of Rwanda-NISR says however the inflation Urban CPI increased by 4.5 percent in December 2015 compared to the same month of the previous year.

“This is mainly due to the rising prices of Food and non-alcoholic beverages 9.7 percent, Housing, water, electricity, gas and other fuels 2.9 percent and Transport 2.4 percent,
the statement read.

“The underlying inflation rate (excluding fresh food and energy) increased by 0.3 percent compared to November 2015 and increased by 2.3 percent when compared to December 2014,” said Oscar SIBOMANA, Acting Director of Economic Statistics Department at the  statistics body.

Accordingly, local goods inflation stood at 5.7 percent on an annual basis while imported products inflation reached 1.3 percent. On a monthly basis, local goods prices reduced by 0.8 percent while imported products went up 0.3 percent.

On the other hand, fresh products reached 16.2 percent on an annual basis in December, 2015 but eased on a monthly basis declined 3.5 percent.

Rulindo farmer embraces apple growth

1

Gérard Sina, a farmer and entrepreneur in Rulindo district has set his eyes on growing more apples on Tare hills so as to cut down on the burden of importing the apple fruit in Rwanda.

Apples are one of the most costly fruits in Rwanda (about Rwf300 a piece) and are often imported from South Africa and some parts of Uganda; making the apple price constantly higher and most expensive fruit per unit in Rwanda.

Sina says that apple growth in Rwanda is a possible and profitable business if one takes courage and determination.

“I choose to focus on the apple growing business because they are on a high demand and yet it has to be imported. By growing more apples I believe I will increase local supply and cut on import needs” Sina said.

Currently, Sina supplies the local market in Bushoki sector commonly known as Nyirangarama trading center, where most tourists make stopovers before heading into the Virunga Mountains.

“The market is bigger that the supply. I plan on expanding the farmland so as to meet the demand” Sina said.

Apple growing was first introduced in Rwanda by the ministry of agriculture through the National Agriculture and Export Board (NAEB) but the supply of apples on the local market remains a major challenge in the fruit business.

So far, four apple varieties are in Rwanda, with the best performing two being Anna and Golden.

In 2015, NAEB embarked on a programme aimed at promoting apple farming in the country and cultivated apples on 20 hectares of land at Miyove prison in Gicumbi District, Northern Province.

François Muhizi, a fruit officer at NAEB says that they have identified farmers in Nyabihu, Rubavu and Musanze districts but the implementation of the programme is being hampered by financial constraints and called upon the government to provide them with financial support.

Apples are harvested every five months and that Western and Northern Province are potential area for growing apples due to its high altitude and cold, which is conducive for the production of apples.

Apples are also grown in Rubavu, Burera, Karongi, Bugesera and Huye districts in Rwanda but at a small scale.

moto-taxi-operators-in-Rusizi-District

moto-taxi-operators-in-Rusizi-District

Hundreds of moto taxi operators in Rusizi district have learnt a good lesson the most painful way.

Grouped under Cooperative de Taxi Moto de Rusizi (Comoru), about 400 moto taxi operators collect about Rwf82.6million per year from membership fees and a daily levy.

“Every day, we contribute Rwf500, on top of Rwf2000 every month since 2012,” says Hamdunia Mugabushaka, a member of the cooperative.

With this volume of funds flowing in steadily, they agreed to construct a 4-storied commercial building strategically located within Kamembe town.

However, after completing two floors, cooperative members realised their funds were not sufficient to complete the entire building.

They realised they needed more than just Rw80m. It was in 2012 and they applied for a throat chocking loan worth Rwf142 million from GT-Bank.

A project they anticipated to be ready by January 2014 has become a nightmare.

From the day they acquired the loan, GT Bank pressed the counter button. Ticking, every month. Every single franc they collected, the bank swallowed it.

Apparently, the cooperative is running bankrupt and has thus failed to service the loan. Every member is under pressure. They are frustrated and furious.

There is also bad air between members and managers of the cooperative. Members accuse managers of mismanagement and failure to negotiate a better and manageable deal with the financier.

“Our representatives made a lot of mistakes; they got themselves involved into purchase of construction materials and messed up the project,” said Emile Rukundo, a moto-taxi operator.

And Mugabushaka, another member, has a different worry. “It has become a burden to us; let the bank come and auction the house and we restart afresh because we are fed up with paying penalties.”

Contributions are also declining instead of growing, but members are kept out of the know.

After the management realised that they could lose their 37-rooms property, they are now pleading with GT-Bank. The bank has threatened to auction the commercial complex to recover its Rwf 153 million.

Jean Damascène Habimana, the vice president of the cooperative told KT Press that they have not paid the monthly Rwf4 million to the bank for three months now. Penalties have reached Rwf8million.  “Members cannot raise the required amount to pay every month,” he said.

The magnificent 4-floor commercial complex under auction threat The magnificent 4-floor commercial complex under auction threat

The magnificent 4-floor commercial complex under auction threat

On January 8, 2016, the cooperative representatives met with the Rusizi district mayor and the district council to seek advice on how to cover the loan.

The district told them that there is no short cut rather than convincing all members to own the project and clear the loan.

“We are negotiating with the bank to give us more Rwf35 million to complete the property, we hope it will work,” says Habimana adding that their actual loan is set to be recovered within seven years.

Damien Mugabo, the Director General of Rwanda Cooperative Agency (RCA) told KT Press that, “We would not advice the cooperative members to give up a house which cost them a lot while it is almost ready.”

Mugabo said Rwanda Cooperative Agency will help in suing cooperative representatives who mismanaged members’ funds.

He however attributes the mismanagement to lack managerial skills and they inability for members to follow up on their funds.

Source:KTPress

Eastern province farmers stand 2015 dry spell

Eastern province farmers stand 2015 dry spell

The agricultural harvest in Eastern Province of Rwanda has been good despite the challenges of having several months of the dry spell in some of the districts, farmers and provincial officials have said.

This was revealed on January 8, 2016 by most farmers’ cooperatives in the Eastern Province during a consultative and planning meeting for the 2016 agricultural year, which brought together various stakeholders in the region

Odette Uwamariya, the provincial governor said that province was hard hit by dry spells especially in the districts of Kayonza, Nyagatare and Kirehe; creating fear of having a low harvest among farmers, but the changes in whether didn’t massively affect the agricultural output.

The governor also revealed apparently some farmers in the above districts didn’t bother to cultivate due to fear of losing their produce.

“The rain was not good enough the past season and even when it rained, it didn’t fall on time and in all places. Some areas were affected in terms of harvest output, but the general regional output was good” Uwamariya said.

Some of the produce which was affected included Soya, but the maize was high by over 390.000 tonnes and rice produce was not affected much. Uwamariya cited.

The governor also said that the farmers have to adapt to using modern storage facilities to address the issue of middlemen who mainly profit the desperate situations faced by farmers to make huge profits out of the bad seasons.

The Permanent Secretary of the agriculture ministry, Innocent Musabyimana also urged farmers to insert more efforts in preparing, and additional use of fertilizers for the next agricultural season so as address such unprecedented situations.

“Farmers have been negligent is using fertilizers. This situation can be minimized if they learn how to use fertilizers and the ministry will also do its part in providing the seeds on time” Musabyimana said

Cost hampering Rwanda’s export competitiveness in EAC

Off-loading maize grain at a warehouse. Bakhresa Grain Milling has ventured into Rwanda with an eye to the DRC export market.

Off-loading maize grain at a warehouse. Bakhresa Grain Milling has ventured into Rwanda with an eye to the DRC export market.

Despite the quality of Rwanda’s exports compared to their rivals in the region, cost is still hampering their competitiveness thus lowering export receipts.

Exporters say that Rwanda’s products access to other markets within the region, thanks to the common market protocol but still fail to compete as they are expensive compared to products in those markets.

“Since they get some of the resources for the making of these products at a lower price, the consumer price tend to be lower,” Thaddee Musabyimana, Director General, Sosoma Industries told this website in an interview on Thursday.

Manufacturers say that the challenges of packaging materials as well as other costs of products such as electricity, water contribute to the rising of the retail prices of Rwandan products.

This contributes to weak performance of the exports destined to the region with the third quarter of 2015 recording a decline of by 24 percent when compared to the second quarter of 2015 and 7 percent in the third quarter 2014.

Statistics from national Institute of Statistics of Rwanda-NISR show US$ 19.65 million was collected in exports to the region in the third quarter of 2015 with Kenya taking largest share of US$ 16.04 million.

Whilst, Uganda and Burundi followed Kenya taking a share on the domestic export to the region valued at US$ 1.65 million and US$ 1.49 million, respectively.

“We are negotiations with government and other partners to see how we address bottlenecks that affect our exports in general and packaging is part of these challenges,” said Gerald Mukubu, Director in Charge of Advocacy at Private sector Federation-PSF.

In an effort such challenges, the ministry of trade and industry initiated the industrial parks and kicked off negotiations with investors to set up a packaging industry.

Rwanda’s First Lady To Introduce Young Leaders To Leadership

The First Lady Mrs Jeannette Kagame (r) at the recent YouthConnekt Champions and Young Rwandan Achievers award ceremony

The First Lady Mrs Jeannette Kagame (r) at the recent YouthConnekt Champions and Young Rwandan Achievers award ceremony

Rwanda’s First Lady Mrs.Jeannette Kagame is expected to address young leaders from various sectors at the first young leaders conference on Saturday, January 9, 2016.

Organised by Rwanda leadership fellowship under the theme; ‘Sowing seeds of excellence in young leaders generation’, the conference will attract over 250 young leaders from around the world.

The conference, taking place at the Golden Tulip Hotel in Nyamata, will introduce young leaders to principles of Godly leadership and rising to the occasion of being excellent leaders in Rwanda.

Various panelists will share their experiences to motivate the young leaders and encourage them to make use of opportunities available, not only in the public sector but also in the private sector.

Notable among the panelists include; Rev. Dr. Antoine Rutayisire, Hon. Tony Nsanganira, Clarisse Iribagiza, Col. Eugene Haguma, Ms. Nelly Mukazayire and Mr. Samuel Lock.

Rev. Dr. Rutayisire will present on ‘developing excellence in your leadership’ while Col. Haguma is scheduled to present on ‘creating the right environment for the leadership development‘.

According to Rwanda leadership fellowship, “the conference also seeks to instill Godly values in the young leaders as a means of preparing them for the future, and also a way of creating a lasting legacy of excellence in leadership.”

Organisers say the young leaders expected include; students, student guilds, leaders in universities, public servants and entrepreneurs.

Motivational speakers comprising of renowned successful people, and government leaders will discuss various issues and present feasible solutions, thus also sowing seeds of excellence in the future leaders of Rwanda.

SOURCE : KT-PRESS

Ngoma youths challenged to create jobs

Youth are called upon to embrace job creation

Youth are called upon to embrace job creation

Private sector federation in Ngoma district revealed that many youth have not embraced job creation, a program that aims at reducing unemployment rate and create off-farm jobs.

This comes after job creation program was included in the school curriculum and youth trainings are organized more often to reduce unemployment.

An estimated 125,000 youths join the job market annually but according to the 2012 population census, only 104,000 are created every year.

On the side of youth, some highlighted that they fear getting bank loans and incurring loss, adding that continuous training help them get rid of fear.

Divine Muzabibu, University student at INATEK-Kibungo asserted that job creation lessons at school did not help her, adding that attending many trainings made her fearless to start a project.

“After many trainings, I got the courage to start up my own company instead searching for a job,” she added

Pacifique Uwineza; in charge of young entrepreneurs at Private Sector Federation Rwanda said that they are not discouraged by the fact that some youth do not create own jobs.

“When you train people, not all of them put into practice what they learnt. However, a few of them start up projects and we will be following up on them to ensure fast development,” added Uwineza.

Uwineza blamed the low turn up of youth on failure to follow up on the few youth that could set up projects, thus suffer financial loss.

“We have changed the strategy. We will be working with National Youth Council to train youth and follow up on the projects they start,” he explained.

Youth fear creating jobs and suffer loss and continuous training is one of the ways to help them gather confidence and start up.

Youths account for 4.4 million of the total population in the country that boasts 11 million people.

Follow

Get every new post delivered to your Inbox

Join other followers