Rwanda marked the 29th anniversary of its liberation earlier this month. Known as Kwibohora, Liberation Day is celebrated annually on July 4 in Rwanda. The Rwandan Patriotic Army, the armed wing of the Rwandan Patriotic Front (RPF), ended the genocide in 1994 against the Tutsi that claimed more than 1 million lives in the country.
Gerard Rurangwa, a Rwandan economic expert said the country has experienced tremendous changes in terms of economic development, due to good governance, security and economic reforms.
“Rwandan government, in terms of economy, has changed a lot for daily life of Rwandans so far, as I said before. Let’s look at the microeconomic policy. For now we have financial markets, and we’ve got the capital market authority. For the previous 29 years, we did not have the financial markets. Also, we have different commercial banks, we have local commercial banks, and also we have like three or four foreign direct investments, so international commercial banks come to play their activities in Rwanda.
Rwanda has made a lot of progress in terms of industrialization. For now we have different industries. Even for now we export the cement and we have agro-processing industries in Rwanda, so we have different industries.
The most thing that attracted foreign investors to come in Rwanda is security, so in Rwanda we have enough security and you can do your business anytime, anywhere without any problems."Comparing the government budget in 1995, when the country was dependent on donors’ funding, with that for the 2023-2024 fiscal year, Rurangwa said the budget has increased by 90 folds to 5.03 trillion Rwandan francs (about 4.76 billion U.S. dollars) with 63 percent of it financed by domestic revenues.
According to the World Bank, Rwanda’s growth averaged 7.2 percent a year over the decade to 2019, while the per capita gross domestic product (GDP) grew at 5 percent. Rurangwa said, this gives the government confidence to map out its development path to become a middle-income country by 2035.
The country’s economy was largely dependent on agriculture before the liberation. However, the manufacturing sector has been playing a bigger role in the past years, and the service sector has been on the fast track of development, contributing 47 percent to the country’s GDP in 2022.Rurangwa said Rwanda’s efforts in facilitating businesses, fighting corruption and maintaining security in the country make it attractive for investment.
According to the Rwanda Development Board, Rwanda attracted two billion U.S. dollars of foreign investments per year on average in the last three years, up from 300 million dollars in 2010.
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