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Mineral exports boost Rwanda's economic upswing
March 18, 2018, 12:21 pm
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Total value of Rwandan exports grew from US$589.7 million in 2016 to $943.5 in 2017, a growth of 57.6 percent, said the country Finance and Economic Planning Minister Claver Gatete while tabling a draft law for the revised 2017/18 fiscal year budget in Parliament.

The minister further disclosed that a significant portion of the export growth came from the increase in mineral exports, which grew by over 210 percent to $248.5 million in 2017 against the $80.1 million a year earlier.

Reforms to the mining sector, including the establishment of the Mines, Petroleum, and Gas Board, a specialized agency to provide oversight on mining and mineral resources, has given a new impetus to the sector. Among the recent significant developments in the sector are exploratory mining studies, ridding the sector of middlemen and bringing in investors with modern mining technology.

While the main increase in exports was largely from receipts of mineral exports, there were other major drivers of export growth, including receipts from coffee and tea exports, which grew at 9.6 percent and 32.9 percent respectively, due to the recovery of prices for commodities on the international market, said the planning minister.

Rwanda's imports value also shrank by 0.4 percent in 2017 consequently leading to a significant reduction in the trade deficit. "Due to the increase of exports and decrease of imports, trade deficit went down by 21.7 percent from $1624.6 million in 2016 to $1271.9 million in 2017," said Mr. Gatete.

 

 

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