Director General of  NIRDA giving out opening remarks 

The National Industrial Research & Development Agency in collaboration with Rwanda Cleaner Production Centre, Rwanda Agricultural Board, and Rwanda Standards Board has embarked on a training programme targeting local factories, small and medium enterprises in leather processing to adopt cleaner production.The objective of the training was to give the leather SMEs basic knowledge of best practices to improve cost effectively the productivity and competitiveness in production of finished leather as the main raw material of leather footwear and other leather goods manufacturing in Rwanda hence conserving the environment and reducing the cost of production.

Kampeta Sayinzoga, the Director General of NIRDA, said the move will have multiple impact including conserving the environment and reducing production costs for operators though the production of leather is still low.

She said that some of the clean technologies to be introduced include energy conservation, design of factories, and materials including recovery of chemicals and water to cut down cost of production, use of non-hazardous processes, avoidance of potentially environmentally harmful substances and risk reduction.

Under the seven-year government programme, we are devoting a lot of efforts in leather production. We need clean technologies along the whole value chain, from better livestock keeping, slaughtering, and conservation of skins to processing them into finished products. The whole process, if used with clean technologies, would protect environment and save production cost, DG said.


Dr. George Nyombaire, Head of Research and Development Coordination Department in NIRDA

Dr. George Nyombaire, the Head of Research and Development Coordination Department in NIRDA, while addressing the media said that SMEs in leather manufacturing will receive support to facilitate them in embracing their technologies.
“So far, none of the SMEs, or factories in leather manufacturing meet standards in clean technologies and that is why we have embarked on this training. We are going to prepare a budget so that we call for proposals to be financed,” he said.                                                                                                   So far, there is Kigali Leather Factory in Bugesera District producing wet-blue for export and finished leather for local consumption and more than 100 small scare leather goods production units that mainly use artisanal methods.

 Dr. NYOMBAIRE added that SMEs in Leather value chain would be facilitated to conduct study tours in countries with developed leather manufacturing such as India, China, and Ethiopia so as to improve their manufacturing skills.

Steven NIYONZIMA, the coordinator of Rwanda Clean Production Center, a programme under the Ministry of Trade and Industry said that between 2008 and 2016, industries that had adopted efficient and cleaner production technologies had saved $2.8 million, reduced 3,288 tonnes of carbon dioxide every year and 131,358 cubic meter of waste water, among other benefits.



Germaine MUKASHYAKA; chairperson of Leather value chain platform

Germaine Mukashyaka, the Chairperson of Leather value chain Industry Platform (LVCIP) in Rwanda, said the main challenges along the leather value chain include lack of adequate skills about proper ways of producing quality raw material for leather goods production, and efficient use of  available resources.


Participants to the training on clean technologies for leather manufacturing.

Clean Technologies application in leather value chain industry is a continuous strategy to increase productivity, competitiveness and environment performance.

Participants and organizers agreed to have a period of 6-12 months to implement the acquired clean technologies through conducting in-house training and identifying gaps and opportunities within the selected industries in order to propose suitable technologies. Thereafter, a monitoring step will follow for evaluation and awarding the performed industries.    





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