Rwanda charts strong cement demand

Rwanda charts strong cement demand
Published: 08 January 2008

Rwanda Investment Group (RIG), a private investment company created by some 43 local investors has committed Rw500bn (US$27.2m) for investment in the country. Created in September 2006 and headed by the Rwandan Mr Tribert Rujugiro, the company is investing in extraction of methane gas in Lake Kivu in the western part of the country, silk and cement production, plus the maintenance of Kigali industrial park as well as peat extraction.

Tribert Rujugiro, he said that the company’s ongoing investments include production of cement following the acquisition of the only cement producer a state owned cement factory located in the western part of the country last year.

The factory, which was privatised to RIG in a public tender, is now capable of producing 100,000tpa of cement and the demand of cement since then, has continued to increase to the extent that nationwide, it stands at above 200,000tpa all sold in bags, on the basis of 2007 data.

This surge has been triggered by the fast growing local construction sector and the move has also seen rising imports with triggered Uganda-based Hima Cement now also selling appreciable amounts of bagged deliveries to Rwandan traders.

According to Rujugiro, RIG is itself also seeking to import over 12,500t from abroad in 2008. The company is reportedly targeting either China or Ukraine producers.

According to the chairman, RIG made a profit of Rw1bn (US$1.8m) last year from its cement division and hopes to improve on this when its plans to construct a new clinker line are realised. To this extent the company is now talking with Chinese contractors for a complete new line costing around US$30m for an enhanced capacity of some 200,000tpa.