The Government of Rwanda (GoR) and C&H Garments Company signed a Memorandum of Agreement (MoA) to start the process of creating a garments manufacturing sector that will have significant job creation and export impact for Rwanda.
The MoA was signed by the Chief Operating Officer of the Rwanda Development Board Clare Akamanzi and C&H garments company owners Helen Hai and Candy Ma.
Under the MoU, C&H Garments company is expected to invest in equipment in a Rwanda training base and to employ at least 200 workers at start-up. This in turn will spur the process of creating a garments manufacturing sector that would have significant job creation and export impacts for Rwanda. If successful, this investment will serve as a ‘proof of concept’ that will bring further investment to Rwanda as has been the case in Ethiopia on the back of the Hua Jian success.
Clare Akamanzi said, “This investment will boost the local manufacturing sector, in terms of diversification of our export base, provision of a new skill sets and creation of jobs for Rwandans. We look forward to seeing Rwanda create ‘home made’ garments that will be commercially successful in both domestic and export markets.”
She further welcomed the fact that C&H garments is taking advantage of Rwanda’s highly ranked business environment and pledged that the Government will continue to support new investors in the manufacturing sector and that this investment is the first of many.
Helen Hai said, “C&H Garments is very pleased to be starting a new manufacturing unit in the Kigali Special Economic Zone and are pleased to acknowledge the extensive support provided by RDB in developing our plans. We will shortly be shipping new equipment from China and plan to recruit our initial 200 workers in September 2014. We believe that Rwanda can offer a strong and disciplined workforce that will ensure we develop a successful business exporting garments to both Europe and the US.”
C&H garments Company owners are highly experienced in the manufacturing sector. Helen Hai has successfully set up and managed the fast growth of Hua Jian, a Chinese shoe producer. In the two years between 2010 and 2012, the factory trained and employed 2,000 workers and exports to the US and Europe rose to $12 million per year making Hua Jian the largest shoe exporter in Ethiopia.
Candy Ma is a highly experienced industrial garment manufacturer with 17 years experience of working and managing factories in Africa. From 2009 to 2013 she was MD and owner of Future Garments Ltd based in Nairobi. Future Garments employed 5,000 workers and exported garments under AGOA to companies such as Walmart and Target.