Weak shilling makes Uganda Rwanda’s imports source in the region

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A shopper checks out Minimex maize flour, which is produced in Rwanda. EAC producers want governments to promote their goods.

A shopper checks out Minimex maize flour, which is produced in Rwanda. EAC producers want governments to promote their goods.

The weak shilling in Uganda has made the country, Rwanda’s import destination in the third quarter of 2015, statistics have indicated.

According to statistics from National Institute of Statistics of Rwanda –NISR, Uganda  contributed 50 percent of Rwanda’s total imports from East Africa ahead of other member states.

This comes after most traders prefer to buy goods from Uganda, highlighting lower prices due to weak a shilling that continues to depreciate against the Rwandan francs.

“You buy more goods withless money in Uganda than buying in Kenya,” Claude Musabyimana, a clothing dealer in Remera who shops from Uganda told this website on Thursday.

The Rwandan francs recorded appreciation against regional currencies through the year 2015 with Uganda Shillings trading at 0.2366/0.2317in June, 2015 and 0.2233/0.2189 by Thursday, according to Central bank.

The regional currencies faced depreciation against the green back in the first and second quarter of 2015 on account of economic sluggishness which weakened currencies inthe East Africa region.

“When we buy at cheaper price it makes us get a bigger profit andalso lower the prices on our market,”said Herbert Shumbusho, an importer of construction materials in Gisozi, Kigali.

This saw Rwanda’s imports receipts continued to grow in the third quarter of 2015 when compared to the second quarter of the same year.

“In the third quarter of 2015, Rwanda’s imports from EAC Partner States totaled US$ 125.95million, representing 26.17 percent of overall imported commodities from EAC,” said Sébastien Manzi, Director of Economic Statistics Department at the statistics body.

In terms of share in imports from the region, Uganda contributed 50.3 percent, Kenya 31 percent; Tanzania follows in the third place with a 15.8 percent share of total imports from EAC and Burundi last with only a 2.2 percent share.

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Olive Ndaka is the Junior Editor for RwandaEye. An investor and young entrepreneur, she is a quick learner and has contributed many articles for RwandaEye in Kinyarwanda.

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