The Ministry of Trade and Industry has released a list of nine light industries expected to relocate to the newly designed Kigali Special Economic Zone (KSEZ) before March next year.
The relocation plan is part of government efforts to help existing industries fit into its designed national industrial policy aimed at creating a conducive environment for industrial development.
Rwandafoam, Uprofoam, Rwanda Industry, Aquasan, Sigma Paints, Adma, Mineral Suppliers, Afrifoam and Papyrus will be the first light industries to relocate to the zone early next year.
The site in Gasabo district was selected due to its suitability for industrial use: Landscape, easy access to water and distance from residential areas.
Minister of Trade and Industry Francois Kanimba said owners of factories have welcomed the initiative and are ready to move.
Cost of relocation
“The first phase will accommodate 14 factories,” said Mr Kanimba.
According to the minister, the need for sustainable industrialisation and urban environment management as highlighted in the country`s Vision 2020, prompted the government to review the industrial set up with a view to relocating the industries.
Phases one and two of the zone cover a surface area of 277 hectares while the third phase will cover approximately 134 hectares. The relocation exercise is expected to be complete by end 2016.
Industries are expected to cover the cost of moving their heavy equipment and installation.
Egide Mukono, a member of the task force in charge of the implementation project, said since phases one and two of the zone will cover a surface area of 277ha, there is a need to generate around 15,000Kw of electricity for the project.
“So far, we have not decided on alternative sources of power. We were thinking of building a micro-hydropower dam around the area, but no decisions have been reached yet; we were also proposing to set up thermal plants, but in the meantime we will use the available power sources from the grid,” said Mr Mukono.
He added that so far phase one is 96 per cent complete, and infrastructural developments are in their final stages. The infrastructure includes tarmac roads, water and electricity and a waste water treatment plant.
“As far as waste water management and treatment is concerned, we have set up channels within the zone which will be connecting to the main sewage system in the vicinity of the zone, and the treated water will be recycled,” Mr Mukono added.
However, considering the status and facilities of the Special Economic Zone and availability of land in Kigali, the government is of the view that it will not be possible to relocate all the 104 industries in Gikondo, hence the need to find other suitable sites.
More than 47 local and regional firms had booked plots at the KSEZ.
The government is looking for extra land in remote areas as it seeks to open up more investment opportunities for the business community.
KSEZ is a partnership between the government of Rwanda, the Rwanda Development Bank (BRD), Rwanda Social Security Board, insurance firm Sonarwa, Prime Holdings, Magerwa and Bond Trading.