Despite a lukewarm performance of the country’s exports, the government is optimistic that the sector is expected to grow next year 2016.
The Minister of Trade and Industry Francois Kanimba, says the export sector which recorded a decline in the eleven months of 2015 despite a decline in formal imports is poised to grow next year.
“ Considering the strategies we have put in place such as performance contracts by exporters, we have hopes that our exports will grow ,” he told this website during his visit to Irish potatoes collecting centers in Rubavu district on Wednesday.
According to National bank of Rwanda statistics for the eleven months of 2015, formal exports value decreased by 7.9 percent compared to a decline of formal imports value by 2.6 percent.
This thus brought the import over of formal exports at 23.84 percent by November 2015 from 25.19 percent in the same period 2014.
Therefore, the country’s trade deficit shed off points by 0.8 percent to $ 1,633.05 million in November of 2015 from $1,647.37 million in the same period under review in 2014.
The Minister said that the government on top of performance contracts has set ambitious export targets, making every effort to increase and sustain exports to both regional and international markets.
“We are looking at the whole export value chain to close the gaps,” Peace Basemera, acting Director of External trade at the Ministry of Trade and industry said.
Some of these gaps, the Basemera says include facilitating exporters to access finance, increasing value addition as well as increasing volumes o f exports to meet the demand of products that the market may demand for.