ECONOMY: GENERAL INFORMATION
With a GDP of US $ 4,459 million and a GDP per capita of $ 465 in 2008, Rwanda ranks among the poorest states in the world; the very high demographic weight has largely thwarted government efforts, aimed at improving communication routes and strengthening the productive structures of a country already severely disadvantaged by the lack of direct outlets to the sea. Although the Rwandan economy was not particularly stimulated in colonial times, the introduction of plantation agriculture is due first to the Germans and then to the Belgians, which still constitutes, together with a modest mining activity, the economic base of the country. The results achieved by the various government plans launched after the achievement of independence were certainly not such as to significantly affect the financial and productive possibilities of Rwanda, European Union, as well as those of various international organizations, such as the African Development Fund, the UN, the World Bank etc. At first the government tried to implement an industrialization program (which later proved to be bankrupt), directing its development plans above all towards the agricultural sector and then seeking closer commercial and technical collaboration relations with some neighboring countries. All plans to get the economy off the ground, however, came to a halt in the face of the flare-up of the 1994 civil war: the new government, which took office in July of that year, was forced to neglect the application of the adjustment programs, as a result of the need to direct efforts towards the reconstruction of infrastructures, which in many cases were close to paralysis. L’ the most significant example of the consequences of the conflict can be identified in the vertical collapse of the production of the two main agricultural products: coffee and tea. Serious damage was also caused to the forest heritage (27% of the land area in 2007), even in the formally protected areas (Monti Virunga and Akagera), due to the indiscriminate cutting of trees carried out by the displaced, gathered in improvised rest camps, devoid of any alternative source of heat and fuel. The reconstruction efforts showed their first results as early as 1995. The normalization of the state budget was slower and in the first decade of the 2000s the economy was unable to maintain the growth rates of the years following the end of the conflict.
ECONOMY: AGRICULTURE, LIVESTOCK AND FISHING
Agriculture, before the civil war, clearly held the first place in the Rwandan economy and employed almost the entire active population, contributing to about 90% of exports. Commercial crops, in particular, suffered a violent collapse with the conflict. The recovery has been slow and agriculture has not yet reached the productions prior to 1994. Main products destined for local food are potato, cassava, potato, sorghum, a typical African cereal, which have been joined for some time by the corn and various horticultural products such as beans, peas etc. Among the commercial crops, coffee has a particular place (27,000 tons were produced in 1993, only 22,500 in 2005), followed by tea, tobacco and certain oil crops, such as peanuts and soybeans. § Given that the primary sector is unable to meet local needs, breeding is important: large areas of grassland and savannah, sufficient and not excessive rainfall, limited spread of the tsè-tsè fly favor this activity which, almost unknown until invasion of the Tutsis, however, is carried out with backward and scarcely productive methods. Cattle and goats prevail, both used mainly for milk. § Fishing is very modest, practiced in Lake Kivu. it is however conducted with backward and scarcely productive methods. Cattle and goats prevail, both used mainly for milk. § Fishing is very modest, practiced in Lake Kivu. it is however conducted with backward and scarcely productive methods. Cattle and goats prevail, both used mainly for milk. § Fishing is very modest, practiced in Lake Kivu.
ECONOMY: INDUSTRY AND MINERAL RESOURCES
According to allcountrylist, the construction of some hydroelectric plants, which has made the country almost self-sufficient in the energy field, has launched an industry, albeit a limited one, which however works almost exclusively on local agricultural products (small textile companies, milling complexes, breweries, oil mills, sugar refineries, soap factories etc.). § A certain development presents the mining sector; the mining activity began with the Belgian domination and is limited to the exploitation of cassiterite, tungsten, columbite, tantalite, gold and natural gas deposits; the lack of capital hinders the full exploitation of the gas reserves of the Lake Kivu area, which are estimated to be substantial.