Cablegate: Rwanda Monthly Economic Review
DE RUEHLGB #0934 2880807
ZNR UUUUU ZZH
R 150807Z OCT 07
FM AMEMBASSY KIGALI
TO RUEHC/SECSTATE WASHDC 4789
INFO RUEHNR/AMEMBASSY NAIROBI 1026
RUEHDR/AMEMBASSY DAR ES SALAAM 0968
RUEHJB/AMEMBASSY BUJUMBURA 0159
RUEHKM/AMEMBASSY KAMPALA 1728
RUEHFR/AMEMBASSY PARIS 0341
RUEHKI/AMEMBASSY KINSHASA 0301
RUEHDS/AMEMBASSY ADDIS ABABA 0138
UNCLAS KIGALI 000934
DEPARTMENT FOR AF/C
DEPARTMENT PASS USTDA: EEBONG
DEPARTMENT PASS USTR: WJACKSON
DEPARTMENT PASS COMMERCE: RTELCHIN
DEPARTMENT PASS OPIC: BCAMERON
ADDIS FOR LISA BRODEY
E.O. 12958: N/A
TAGS: EFIN ECON PGOV EINV ENRG ETRD EPET BTIO RW
SUBJECT: RWANDA MONTHLY ECONOMIC REVIEW
DEVELOPMENT PROJECTS / ISSUES
1. The Dutch government, through the Netherlands Organization for
International Cooperation in Higher Education (NUFFIC), is
supporting the Rwanda Flower Farmers Association. In an attempt to
increase flower exports to the Netherlands, the Dutch project will
train six cooperatives in better farming and production strategies.
The training will cover crop management, pest and disease control,
fertilization, post harvest and package handling, electronic
irrigation, and fertilizer production.
COMMERCIAL OPPORTUNITIES / SUCCESSES
2. Rwanda's tea production rose by 21 percent in the first seven
months of 2007 due to good rains and increased use of fertilizers.
The average price of the tea crop, however, dropped to USD 1.69 per
kilogram (kg) in the first seven months of 2007 from USD 2.04/kg in
2006. The American-owned Sorwathe tea plantation continued to have
the highest production of Rwanda's ten major tea factories,
producing 2.4 million kg during the period. The increased
production, however, did not off-set the drop in tea price.
Rwanda's tea traditionally has been sold to the United Kingdom,
Pakistan and Egypt. This year, Rwanda's markets have expanded to
include Russia, Iran and Yemen.
3. Rwanda hosted a Golden Cup Competition to garner international
recognition for its burgeoning specialty coffee industry. Sixteen
professional cuppers from Europe, Japan, and the United States
visited and evaluated coffee from 20 different washing stations.
The organizers of the competition held an auction at the conclusion
of the contest, fetching prices as high as USD 55.10 per kg, which
is 25 times the typical price paid for specialty coffee.
4. The Cabinet adopted the Economic Development and Poverty
Reduction Strategy 2008-2012 (EDPRS). This roadmap for poverty
reduction aims to make Rwanda a middle income country by the year
2020. EDPRS prioritizes government actions to enhance job growth,
exports, governance, and rural development.
5. Torrential rainfall earlier this month in northwestern Rwanda
destroyed homes, ruined crops, killed 15 people and left thousands
more homeless. The flash floods hit the Nyabihu and Rubavu
districts the hardest. While there have been fears that the effects
have the potential to create long-term health and food security
crises across the country, most assessments view the situation as a
localized issue. The government, along with several international
organizations, has provided emergency food aid and non-food items
such as plastic sheetings.