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It’s easy to do business in Rwanda

In January 2013, at the World Economic Forum annual meeting in Davos, Rwanda’s president, Paul Kagame, proudly announced the launch of the East African Commodity Exchange (EAX) in Kigali.

Paul Kukubo, CEO, East African Commodity Exchange in Kigali
Paul Kukubo, CEO, East African Commodity Exchange in Kigali

As part of the regional integration plan between Burundi, Kenya, Tanzania and Uganda, the exchange aims to boost liquidity and provide a commodities market for 130 million people across the entire region, currently plagued by poor infrastructure and inefficient distribution channels. Heading the exchange is Paul Kukubo, previously the chief executive of Kenya’s ICT Board. Kukubo has big ambitions for the exchange, which hopes to create a platform for smaller, regional producers eventually giving them access to futures and options. The hope is that Rwanda will provide a template for an exchange that can be replicated elsewhere where smaller-scale producers are often marginalized.

"This is a type of business that can only thrive in a place where contracts are better honoured and where the macroeconomic environment is conducive to business. Rwanda has the right level of governance and support for investments of this nature and size and it’s really easy to set up a business here," says Kukubo.

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