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Rwanda’s capital market kickstarted an awareness campaign targeting public servants

The Ministry of Finance and Economic Planning (MINECOFIN), through the Capital Market Authority (CMA), plans to mainstream a new public education and awareness programme targeting public servants.

This will be done through a campaign themed: “Promoting the savings and investment culture through the Rwandan capital market within the Public Sector.”

The capital market and its expansion have been an important factor in giving a boost to the growth of the corporate sector since its inception in Rwanda.

With the growth of the capital market, some Rwandan companies are now enjoying the market. However, the relatively low participation of retail investors in the Rwandan economy continues to delay the development of the investor base.

“This public education and awareness campaign will target all Ministries and their affiliated agencies. Their staff will be educated on the importance and benefits associated with saving and investing through the capital market. They will be educated on various key concepts of saving and investment opportunities through the Rwandan capital market,” said Magnifique Migisha, the Coordinator for Public Education and Awareness Programmes at CMA.

“Public servants will also be educated on their rights and obligations as investors of the different capital market saving and investment products and services. The main objective of the campaign is to help public servants to use the capital market as an alternative avenue for saving and investment.”

The National Strategy for Transformation (NST1), which is also the Seven Year Government Programme, puts emphasis on increasing domestic savings and positioning Rwanda as a hub for financial services to promote investments through financial sector development.

The private domestic savings rate is projected to increase from 12.1% in 2017 to 23.9% in 2024. The introduction of innovative savings mobilization schemes is one of the enablers to help achieve the anticipated target.

So far, there are two collective investment schemes: RNIT Iterambere Fund, and Aguka Unit Trust Fund. Iterambere Fund, a trust fund by the Rwanda National Investment Trust Ltd (RNIT Ltd) is one of the opportunities in the Rwandan Capital Market for people to use as an alternative avenue for saving and investment. The Aguka Unit Trust Fund, or the Fund, is an open-ended, tax-exempt unit trust fund, registered under the laws of Rwanda and licensed by the Capital Market Authority. Aguka Unit Trust Fund pools money from investors and invests the Fund’s money into a diversified portfolio of money market instruments, cash deposits, and debt instruments.

Financial education is one of the recognized tools to help support and guide individuals’ decision-making to balance their budget, make ends meet, identify risk factors and plan for their long-term future appropriately.

As a demand-side solution, it can complement supply-side approaches including improved regulation and consumer protection which ensure that investors are protected, well-informed, and treated fairly. It may also be used as a means of encouraging formal savings for those excluded from financial services.

The new awareness programme started on November 16.