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Cablegate: Rwanda Monthly Economic Review

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RR RUEHWEB

DE RUEHLGB #0796/01 2530530
ZNR UUUUU ZZH
R 100530Z SEP 07
FM AMEMBASSY KIGALI
TO RUEHC/SECSTATE WASHDC 4608
INFO RUEHNR/AMEMBASSY NAIROBI 0977
RUEHDR/AMEMBASSY DAR ES SALAAM 0948
RUEHJB/AMEMBASSY BUJUMBURA 0133
RUEHKM/AMEMBASSY KAMPALA 1700
RUEHFR/AMEMBASSY PARIS 0314
RUEHKI/AMEMBASSY KINSHASA 0275
RUEHLO/AMEMBASSY LONDON 0097

UNCLAS KIGALI 000796

SIPDIS

SIPDIS

COMMERCE: RTELCHIN
DEPARTMENT FOR AF/C
DEPARTMENT PASS USTDA: EEBONG
DEPARTMENT PASS USTR: WJACKSON
DEPARTMENT PASS OPIC: BCAMERON
DEPARTMENT PASS AMEMBASSY ADDIS ABABA: LBRODEY

E.O. 12958: N/A
TAGS: EFIN ECON PGOV EINV ENRG ETRD EPET BTIO RW
SUBJECT: RWANDA MONTHLY ECONOMIC REVIEW

Ref Kigali 754

DEVELOPMENT PROJECTS
-------------------------------------

1. The Ministry of Health, in conjunction with the U.S. Mission,
launched a USD 10 million extensive anti-malaria Indoor Residential
Spraying (IRS) campaign for Kigali on August 10. The goal of the
campaign is to reduce malaria-related mortality by 50 percent among
those in most vulnerable categories (children under five years of
age and pregnant women).

2. The World Bank provided USD 500,000 to implement the Business
Plan Competition (BPC) in a bid to develop a solid entrepreneurial
base in Rwanda. Fifty projects will be funded this year, up from
20last year.

3. The World Bank granted another USD 11 million to the Government
of Rwanda (GOR) for a USD 69 million government road project, the
Transport Sector Development Project. Focused on improving the
Kigali-Ruhengeri-Gisenyi road as well as other roads to the borders,
the project aims to improve import into and export out of Rwanda.


ENVIRONMENTAL NEWS
-----------------------------------
4. On August 21 a fire broke out in the in northeastern part of
Akagera National Park. Four park rangers were died and one remains
in critical condition. According to the National Tourism Board
(ORTPN), the fire resulted from poachers attempting to distract
anti-poaching patrol units.

5. The United Nations Environment Program (UNEP) sent a 30-ranger
gorilla-protection team from United Nations Educational, Scientific
and Cultural Organization (UNESCO) and the World Conservation Union
(IUCN) to the Democratic Republic of Congo (DRC) in response to the
July slaughter of four mountain gorillas on the DR C side of the
Virunga National Park. The gorillas are among Africa's best tourist
attractions and the park straddles Rwanda, DRC, and Uganda. Virunga
National Park was inscribed on the World Heritage Site List in 1979
and has been on the List of World Heritage Sites in Danger since
1994. A permanent gorilla-protection unit, totaling 50 rangers, is
expected to be in place later this year, following several months of
training. The killings in DRC have minimal affect on Rwanda's
gorilla population; in fact, some gorillas from the DRC have entered
Rwanda in search of more peaceful territory.

COMMERCIAL NEWS
-----------------------------
6. The Rwanda Development Bank (BRD) will celebrate its 40
anniversary in early September with a launch of new products on the
market. Some of the innovative products that BRD plans to bring to
the market are leasing, venture capital, and guarantee funds for
small and medium enterprises that do not have collateral to qualify
for traditional loans. The bank had a total loan portfolio of USD
30 million and a net income of just over USD 1 million in 2006.

7. The GOR recently bought back Rwandatel, the country's original
telecommunication company from American-owned Terracom (reftel).
Terracom, which acquired Rwandatel for USD 20 million in 2003,
agreed to sell the company for USD 13 million after months of
unresolved conflicts with the GOR. Minister of Energy Albert Butare
reports that the company has already been put on the national tender
board and will soon be re-privatized.

8. The Rwanda International Trade Fair 2007 opened August 23. This
year's theme is "enhancing trade through regional integration."
There are 293 exhibitors, an 8 percent increase from last year.
Foreign exhibitors came from Burundi, India, Ethiopia, Egypt, Ghana,
Kenya, Tanzania, and Uganda.

MACROECONOMIC INDICATORS
--------------------------------------------- -
9. The Rwanda Revenue Authority (RRA) celebrated the 6th annual Tax
Payer's Day by visiting different categories of taxpayers around the
country to discusshow services can be better delivered. Minister
for Finance James Musoni presided over the event and said the
country will collect USD 389 million in tax receipts this year
compared to USD 350 million in 2006.


ARIETTI

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