Creating jobs and stimulating growth in Rwanda

Project description

TitleSpecial Initiative on Training and Job Creation: Job partnerships and SME promotion in Rwanda
Commissioned by: Federal Ministry for Economic Cooperation and Development (BMZ)
Country: Rwanda
Lead executing agency: Ministry of Trade and Industry (MINICOM)
Overall term: 2019 to 2023

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Context

Despite the COVID-19 pandemic, Rwanda maintains one of the highest growth rates in Africa. In 2020, the economy was projected to grow by almost 2 per cent. This is largely due to Rwanda’s rapid response to the spread of the Coronavirus.

Even before the pandemic, Rwanda was already proving to be an increasingly relevant location for business and investment in the region. The country ranked second highest among all African countries in the Ease of Doing Business Index. Rwanda has increased its business volume since joining the East African Community (EAC) in 2007. Direct foreign investments almost tripled between 2008 and 2018. These numbers illustrate that Rwanda is strongly focused on the ambitious targets it set out in its National Strategy for Transformation.

Accordingly, the Rwandan government plans to create 1,500,000 jobs in the country between 2017 and 2024. The Special Initiative on Training and Job Creation is supporting this endeavour under the ‘Invest for Jobs’ brand.

Objective

African and European companies grow and create new jobs in Rwanda.

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Approach

Promoting investment
Invest for Jobs supports the Rwanda Development Board in establishing and consolidating partnerships with African and European companies that are seeking to expand business and investment in the Rwandan market. By jointly identifying and reducing existing barriers to the companies’ investment plans, Invest for Jobs provides demand-oriented services that assist them across all sectors to stimulate growth, foreign investment and job creation.

Elevating local companies
Small and medium-sized enterprises (SMEs) are the backbone of Rwanda’s economy. Their continued growth offers potentials for prosperity in the country and for local employment, especially for young people and women. In joint projects, Invest for Jobs promotes SMEs by training staff members or new candidates, increasing product quality as well as advising on business development. Ultimately, these measures enhance the competitiveness of SMEs, extend their reach beyond the markets they currently serve and create new jobs.

Strengthening special economic zones
To alleviate domestic constraints on the private sector, Invest for Jobs fosters the further development of Rwanda’s special economic zones (SEZs). Focus is put on the already established Kigali Special Economic Zone in the country’s capital. Together with resident companies, Invest for Jobs aims to improve business-oriented services and other offerings provided by the SEZ’s park management. Enhancing these benefits within the ecosystem of the SEZ increases growth and investment, while creating jobs and improving working conditions for employees.

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Results

In cooperation with a Rwandan training provider, Invest for Jobs trained over 300 young people in the ‘internet of things’, which connects physical objects with the virtual world, opening up prospects for innovative business models. The training boosted trainees’ employability through newly acquired skills and improved the availability of skilled staff for international investors.

After the COVID-19 pandemic hit, Invest for Jobs and Rwanda’s Chamber of Tourism started training 960 individuals in the hospitality sector. The learning content covered four operational areas of hospitality as well as a module on COVID-19 adaptations. The training assists participants in remaining employable or reintegrating into a job after being put on forced leave. So far, 240 people have successfully passed the course.

Last update: January 2021