Rwanda Post Office unveils RwandaMart to connect traders to local and international market

On 23 June 2023 at 03:21

Rwanda Post Office has launched RwandaMart, an innovative e-commerce store aimed at assisting traders in reaching both local and international markets.

The widespread adoption of e-commerce in Rwanda, particularly during the Covid-19 pandemic and subsequent lockdowns, has paved the way for this new venture.

RwandaMart serves as a comprehensive one-stop e-commerce platform, offering a diverse range of products and services from local sellers, manufacturers, resellers, and importers.

The company handles all aspects of the business for its vendors, including order fulfillment, shipping, and managing returns and refunds.

By venturing into e-commerce, Rwanda Post Office anticipates an increase in the number of customers seeking their existing services, particularly in parcel delivery.

Celestin Kayitare, the Director General of Rwanda Post Office, explained that their new service is designed to assist traders in packaging their products and presenting them on the website in an appealing manner before they are delivered to the international market.

"We will assist merchants in packaging their products in an attractive and pleasing manner, especially for those who want to sell their products internationally. Small and medium enterprises, in particular, stand to benefit greatly by exposing their products to potential buyers through our platform," Kayitare emphasized.

Currently, 760 companies and vendors have already registered on RwandaMart, primarily those offering products proudly ’Made in Rwanda’.

However, their goal is to have approximately 3,000 registered participants by the end of the year.

The initial phase of this endeavor will not involve any charges for vendors to list their products on the site, allowing them to enjoy the benefits of increased exposure.

Kayitare further revealed their vision of developing an e-commerce platform with exceptional capabilities, aiming to establish a prominent presence in East Africa. Additionally, they plan to collaborate with international companies engaged in online business, such as Alibaba and Amazon.

Richard Niwenshuti, the Permanent Secretary in the Ministry of Trade and Industry, expressed his enthusiasm for the platform, highlighting its role in connecting various online marketplaces. "This website serves as a unifying platform, connecting different sites and traders, thereby expediting the promotion of Rwanda’s quality products in other markets and accelerating business growth," he stated.

Moreover, Niwenshuti emphasized that the integration of this platform with the services of the Post Office adds significant value. When customers make purchases, the Post Office automatically initiates the delivery process, streamlining the entire transaction.

It is expected that the Post Office will provide guidance to business owners and clients seeking to understand the intricacies of online commerce. The Post Office also ensures that only traders who possess the necessary skills and produce high-quality products are eligible to join the platform, ensuring customer satisfaction.

Various small and medium-sized traders, specializing in jewelry Made in Rwanda, have already experienced the benefits of RwandaMart. They have reported expanded global reach for their products, resulting in increased revenue.

Looking ahead, an application for mobile phones is in the pipeline, enabling easy access to this burgeoning market.

The development of RwandaMart began two years ago under the auspices of the German Development Agency, GIZ, and has been managed by Rwanda Post Office for the past three months.

With this new venture, Rwanda is poised to capitalize on the growing potential of e-commerce and foster economic growth in the region.