Inside Rwanda’s growing demand for roofing sheets

On 11 September 2023 at 11:21

Given the remarkable urbanization unfolding in Kigali and other secondary cities, characterized by the erection of modern hotels, towering skyscrapers, and futuristic residential neighborhoods, the appetite for roofing sheets for construction continues to surge in Rwanda.

Their significance cannot be overstated, as underscored by the Ministry of Trade and Industry (MINICOM) data dating back to 2010. These statistics ranked roofing sheets fourth among the 11 most imported construction materials, accounting for a staggering $74 million.

The rapid expansion of the construction sector, contributing Rwf647 billion to the national economy in 2019, underscores Rwanda’s ambition to construct at least 150,000 housing units, with a long-term goal of reaching 5.5 million units by 2050.

This vision, coupled with the government’s allocation of 1,100 hectares of buildable land, including 890 in Kigali, solidifies the growing significance of roofing sheet production in the country.

At present, Rwanda is home to 19 factories engaged in roofing sheet manufacturing, boasting a combined capacity of 43,000 tons per year, which translates to covering 19 million square meters annually.

MINICOM has told IGIHE that these roofing sheet factories collectively generate an annual income of Rwf65 billion.

Despite this substantial industrial potential, Rwanda remains reliant on imports, spending Rwf22 billion on roofing sheets each year. Nevertheless, it also exports roofing sheets valued at nearly US$4.7 million.

Among the key players in the sector, Tolirwa Ltd, established in 1978, stands as an iconic figure, alongside Master Steel Limited and Safintra Rwanda Ltd, a subsidiary of the African conglomerate, Safal Group.

Other roofing sheet manufacturing sheet in Rwanda include S&H Industries Ltd, Rwanda Special Materials Ltd , All City Rwanda Ltd, Material Bank Rwanda Ltd, New Precision co; Ltd, Royal Fix amabati Ltd , Salama Machine Ltd , Steel Giant Limited , Obor Technology(Rwanda) Ltd , Madras Materials Ltd, Petrocom ltd, Simaco Ltd , Metalen Ltd and Kinglion.

With continuous support from MINICOM and other institutions, Rwanda aims to foster additional investments in the roofing sheet production sector.

The surging need for roofing sheets in Rwanda reflects the growing construction sector.