7th – 10th of August 2023 an Africa Leather and Leather Products Institute delegation Conducted a 5-day field mission to Rwanda. The mission was organized as part of the collaboration of ALLPI and Rwanda leather stakeholders.
The delegation visited MINICOM, Rwanda TVET Board, leather enterprises in the value chain and the newly established Kigali Leather Cluster.
The delegation was well received by the honorable Permanent Secretary for industrial development Mr. Richard. The PS and the delegates discussed about the collaborations between Rwanda and ALLPI in the transformation of the leather sector. The PS also updated the delegates about the status of the leather park in the process of establishment. Currently local manufacturers are depending on imported finished leather. This shows that currently the main bottleneck to the leather sector in Rwanda is a problem on the supply side other than the demand side. Taking into consideration this constraint the Rwanda government has launched to establish a Tanery Park in Bugasera District. This project is expected to have a big impact in the process of transformation of the leather sector of Rwanda. The PS applauded ALLPI’s intervention in the leather sector in Rwanda and requested ALLPI to continue its support to the leather sector in Rwanda. The Acting Executive Director in his turn reiterated that ALLPI’s commitment to work with MINICOM and Rwanda stakeholders in the transformation process of the leather sector in Rwanda.
On the same date the delegates visited the Rwanda TIVET Board and discussed with the Board about the curriculum in use at the TIVET schools. Currently Rwanda has five levels of which some of them are in the process of revision. The delegates appreciated the explanation and discussed as to how ALLPI could contribute to the ongoing revision process of curriculums by the TIVET board. The Board is in process of revising levels foundation, III and IV. The delegates accompanied by an official from the Board visited one of the TIVET schools in the country in Ganza region. The delegates observed that the visited TIVET School has a leather section and the school is offering leather training for level I, II and III. The TIVET school is a boarding school and receives from all over the country.
On the third day, the Kigali Leather Cluster organized a tour for the delegates of ALLPI to visit enterprises engaged in the leather sector. The first enterprises visited was a hides and skins that preserves, stores and exports its products to Kenya. He further explained that the source of the hides and skins is an abattoir in Kigali. After the visit to hides and skins, the delegates continued its visit to an abattoir in Kigali the source of the hides and skins to the mentioned hides and skins exporter. The delegates observed the process of slaughtering in the mechanized abattoir. The mechanized slaughter abattoir has a capacity of slaughtering 300 hides and skins.
In the same day the delegates participated in a meeting organized by the Kigali Leather Cluster. The meeting was organized by the cluster to facilitate a discussion between 70 youths, public officials, ALLPI and the Cluster Secretariat. The Acting Executive Director of ALLPI expressed his appreciation for the cluster secretariat for showing a great stride in a short period of time. He expressed his impression saying that he and members of his delegates have been overwhelmed by the progress shown and also by the event organized. The Kigali Leather Cluster was established in May, 2023 through the facilitation of ALLPI.
In the last day of the mission ALLPI delegates participated in one day training workshop aimed at linking SMEs with suppliers and institutional buyers. In the one-day workshop SMEs, suppliers and institutional buyers, officials and Kigali Leather Secretariat participated. The participants discussed on the presentations presented by ALLPI expert and Rwanda Bureau of standards.
The ALLPI delegates were composed of Mr. Ghebregziabher Ghebremedhin, the Acting Executive Director and Programs Coordinator, Mr. Preston Viswamo, Regional Studio Manager, Mrs Tigst Hailegiorgis Admin, Budget and Finance head and Mrs. Birknesh Gonfa, Investment, Marketing and Trade expert.