Rwanda: RRA to Probe Cement Quality

Rwanda: RRA to Probe Cement Quality
Published: 25 November 2009

Rwanda Revenue Authority (RRA) is investigating the quality of imported cement after it was revealed the same kind of cement was being sold at different market prices.

The tax department is investigating the cases in conjunction with the Rwanda Bureau of Standards (RBS).

Speaking to The New Times, the Director of Revenue Protection Department, Seth Muhirwa, said the most targeted product is Hima Cement that is imported from neighouring Uganda which is mainly sold in Nyabugogo.

"An investigation is being carried out on cement because there is there is cement being sold at Rwf 8,000 and Rwf9000 yet others are selling the same type at Rwf10000 and above," he said.

He said that the department suspects that the huge difference in prices, has something to do with the quality of the product.

Rwanda imports most of her cement supplementing CEMERWA, a local cement manufacturing plant that can’t meet the huge demand with the current construction boom.

In 2008, the construction and public works sector increased by 15.2 percent from 5 percent in 2006.

"We will work hand-in-hand with RBS. We want to engage them to redo the tests. We think quality might be one of the reasons behind the low price, and we can’t qualify to call it fake until RBS does the tests," he said.

Besides the testing, the investigations will also try to track down the source of the suspected fake cement.