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DMCC Chairman Discusses Commodity Trade, Extends Support to Rwanda

October 21 2016

Bin Sulayem extends support to the Rwanda’s ambitious aspirations to transform itself into a commodity trading hub


DMCC Executive Chairman, Ahmed Bin Sulayem, has visited Rwanda as part of his tour across Africa to engage leaders in a dialogue in order to explore opportunities for economic development and diversification. The tour follows DMCC’s recent accolade as Global Free Zone of the Year by FDI Magazine, a Financial Times publication.

Mr. Bin Sulayem met with Dr. Gerardine Mukeshimana, Minister of Agriculture and Animal Resources, Vincent Biruta, Minister of Natural Resources, Amb. Bill Kayonga, Chief Executive Office, National Agricultural Export Development Board.

Mr. Bin Sulayem visited Rwanda to deepen dialogue with regard to the country’s commodities, a sector which employs 70% of the labour force, and produces tea, coffee, halal meat, fresh beans, and flowers. Tea and coffee make up four-fifths of the country’s agricultural exports accounting for $150M in trade annually. A large portion of Rwanda’s tea is exported to Dubai, and the DMCC Tea Centre, from where it’s re-exported to world markets. Rwanda has also signed a trade agreement with the UAE for halal meat, which will ensure future supplies of Halal meat into the region.

“Africa has always been valued for its commodities whether it is precious metals, tea, coffee, and beans, and is a strong trading ally to the UAE. Rwanda’s solid growth record and macroeconomic stability provide a solid foundation for agricultural development and investment. As the world’s largest free zone and commodity hub, we are keen to extend our knowledge to support the country’s ambitious aspirations with regard to commodities trading,” said Bin Sulayem.

In July 2014, Rwanda became home to East Africa Exchange (EAX), a privately funded regional, agricultural commodities exchange in East Africa, the third-largest agricultural commodities exchange on the continent.

During the last five years, the exports of Rwanda have increased at an annualized rate of 20.2%, creating new business prospects and lifting people out of poverty. The Government of Rwanda is actively working to develop the economy and reform financial and business sectors. Earlier this year, Rwanda’s President Paul Kagam hailed the relationship with UAE, emphasizing UAE’s investment in the country.

Mr. Bin Sulayem continued: “DMCC is currently a leading commodities and trading hub internationally, and Dubai has a lot to offer in terms of providing a model and benchmark for similar infrastructure in Rwanda. We are committed to working with key strategic partners in the country and across the African continent to strengthen local markets, empower its citizens, increase transparency, and diffuse power and wealth throughout society.”