Rwanda Economy

Is Rwanda a rich country?

Rwanda is a rural, agrarian country with agriculture accounting for about 63% of export earnings, and with some mineral and agro-processing. Population density is high but, with the exception of the capital Kigali, is not concentrated in large cities – its 12 million people are spread out on a small amount of land (smaller than the state of Maryland). Tourism, minerals, coffee, and tea are Rwanda's main sources of foreign exchange. Despite Rwanda's fertile ecosystem, food production often does not keep pace with demand, requiring food imports. Energy shortages, instability in neighboring states, and lack of adequate transportation linkages to other countries continue to handicap private sector growth.

The 1994 genocide decimated Rwanda's fragile economic base, severely impoverished the population, particularly women, and temporarily stalled the country's ability to attract private and external investment. However, Rwanda has made substantial progress in stabilizing and rehabilitating its economy well beyond pre-1994 levels. GDP has rebounded with an average annual growth of 6%-8% since 2003 and inflation has been reduced to single digits. In 2015, 39% of the population lived below the poverty line, according to government statistics, compared to 57% in 2006.

The government has embraced an expansionary fiscal policy to reduce poverty by improving education, infrastructure, and foreign and domestic investment. Rwanda consistently ranks well for ease of doing business and transparency.

The Rwandan Government is seeking to become a regional leader in information and communication technologies and aims to reach middle-income status by 2020 by leveraging the service industry. In 2012, Rwanda completed the first modern Special Economic Zone (SEZ) in Kigali. The SEZ seeks to attract investment in all sectors, but specifically in agribusiness, information and communications, trade and logistics, mining, and construction. In 2016, the government launched an online system to give investors information about public land and its suitability for agricultural development.

Rwanda Economy Data

What is the GDP of Rwanda?

GDP - Gross Domestic Product (PPP) $18,900,000,000 (USD)
GDP - official exchange rate $8,468,000,000 (USD)
GDP - real growth rate 6.5%
GDP Per Capita $1,800.00 (USD)
GDP by Sector- agriculture 32.6%
GDP by Sector- Industry 14.1%
GDP by Sector- services 53.3%
GDP - composition, by end use household consumption: 73.7%

government consumption: 14.7%

investment in fixed capital: 25.6%

investment in inventories: 0.8%

exports of goods and services: 13.6%

imports of goods and services: -28.4%
Population Below Poverty Line 44.9%
Inflation Rate 3.9%
Labor Force 4,446,000
Labor Force By Occupation- agriculture 90%
Fiscal Year calendar year
Annual Budget $1,436,000,000 (USD)
Budget Surplus or Deficit - percent of GDP -4.3%
Taxes and other revenues - percent of GDP 23.6%
Major Industries cement, agricultural products, small-scale beverages, soap, furniture, shoes, plastic goods, textiles, cigarettes
Industrial Growth Rate 7.5%
Agriculture Products coffee, tea, pyrethrum (insecticide made from chrysanthemums), bananas, beans, sorghum, potatoes; livestock
Currency Code Rwandan franc (RWF)
Labor Force By Occupation - industry and services 10%
Child Labor - % of children ages 5-14 35%
Child Labor - # of children ages 5-14 783,113
Commercial Bank Prime Lending Rate 16.3%

Labor Force by Occupation- As reported by Rwanda

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