The Trade and Development Bank (TDB) – formerly Eastern and Southern African Trade and Development Bank or PTA, has announced plan to widen its financing of big projects in Rwanda.
The Bank – with presence in 21 countries across Africa has been at the fore front of major projects on the continent.
In Rwanda, the Bank has released up to $468 million to finance bankable projects such as Rwanda’s National carrier – RwandAir, other big projects in the energy, transport and now commits to expand its reach to agribusiness and manufacturing sector.
With a balance sheet that has grown from $1.2 billion in 1985 to $5 billion, TDB officials told KT Press that Rwanda stands as a potential market for development financing.
“When we funded RwandAir, we wanted to take Rwanda to the world and bring the World to Rwanda. Since our financing, we are happy that the carrier has launched several routes across the globe,” Dr. Mabouba Diagne – the bank’s director of deal structuring and financing modelling told KT Press.
One of Rwanda’s sectors that have lamented lack of access to finance from banks is manufacturing.
Rakesh Bhatnagar, Director of SRB Investments Rwanda Ltd – an Indian company currently manufacturing printed paper bags told KT Press that financial institutions in the country are still ‘conservative’ especially when it comes to financing manufacturing industries.
“The banks in Rwanda are very conservative and reluctant to fund investments in manufacturing. Rwanda tremendously attracted investors, but local banks are very conservative and only interested in financing 5-star-hotels or multi-storied buildings. Their approach to industries is not good,” Bhatnagar told KT Press.
With TDB officially coming to Rwanda, it serves as a game changer to manufacturers like Bhatnagar. “We are focused on financing variety of sectors in Rwanda as we have been doing in other African countries,” said Mary Kamari, director of corporate services Affairs and Investor relations.
According to Admassu Tadesse, President and CEO of the bank, the bank will continue to increase financing for priority sectors; Manufacturing, infrastructure and agribusiness sectors in the next five years.
By rebranding its name, the bank seeks to fully serve its growing partners across the continent. “We have dramatically increased our capacity to meet the rising demand for the bank’s products and services. Our shareholder base has increased to more than 50% in recent years with several new institutions and member states,” said Kamari.
Founded in 1985, TDB is a multilateral, treaty-based financial institution. Rwanda Social Security Board (RSSB) is a shareholder.