30 September 2004


Continued reforms and technical assistance should help Rwanda in its efforts to achieve a dynamic economy

The continuation of macroeconomic and structural reforms introduced by Rwanda since the end of the 1994 genocide are essential to provide its economy with the competitiveness and dynamism it needs if it is to reap the full benefits of the country’s participation in the multilateral trading system and its recent accession to the COMESA (Common Market for Eastern and Southern Africa), according to a report on the trade policies and practices of Rwanda released by the WTO Secretariat.

The report stresses that Rwanda needs considerable technical assistance from the international community to build capacity in trade negotiations, to integrate trade into its development strategy, to transcribe its pre-Uruguay Round tariff commitments into the Harmonized System, and to effectively implement the WTO Agreements, particularly in the areas of customs valuation, sanitary and phytosanitary measures, technical barriers to trade and trade-related aspects of intellectual property rights.

The reforms, together with assistance from the international community, and enhancement of Rwanda’s multilateral commitments on both goods and services, should contribute to improving the transparency and predictability of the country’s trade regime, and should attract the capital needed to diversify its economy, the present lack of diversification having left Rwanda vulnerable to external shocks, including international market fluctuations.

The WTO Secretariat report notes that in addition to providing technical assistance, the partner countries could help Rwanda in its unilateral reconstruction efforts, inter alia, eliminating practices which affect the markets for products of interest to Rwanda and by guaranteeing broader and more stable access to their markets.

The WTO report, along with a policy statement by the Government, will be the basis for the Trade Policy Review (TPR) by the Trade Policy Review Body of the WTO.

The following documents are available in MS Word format.


Note  back to top

Trade Policy Reviews are an exercise, mandated in the WTO agreements, in which member countries’ trade and related policies are examined and evaluated at regular intervals. Significant developments that may have an impact on the global trading system are also monitored. For each review, two documents are prepared: a policy statement by the government of the member under review, and a detailed report written independently by the WTO Secretariat. These two documents are then discussed by the WTO’s full membership in the Trade Policy Review Body (TPRB). These documents and the proceedings of the TPRB’s meetings are published shortly afterwards.

Print copies of previous TPR publications are available for sale from the WTO Secretariat, Centre William Rappard, 154 rue de Lausanne, 1211 Genève 21 and through the on-line bookshop.

The TPR publications are also available from our co-publisher Bernan Press, 4611-F Assembly Drive, Lanham, MD 20706-4391, United States.


Schedule of forthcoming reviews  back to top

Norway: 11 and 13 October 2004
European Union: 25 and 27 October 2004
Jamaica: 8 and 10 November 2004