File photo shows that Dieudonne Twahirwa, managing director of Rwandan chili maker Gashora Farm, presents chili oil at his booth during the first China International Import Expo in Shanghai, east China, on Nov. 8, 2018. (Xinhua/Hou Dongtao).KIGALI — Rwandan agribusiness company Gashora Farm is eyeing the upcoming China International Import Expo (CIIE) as an opportunity to strengthen the relationship with its Chinese partners with exports of chili products to China.
The company, which sealed a chili oil deal worth about 2 million U.S. dollars during the first CIIE held in 2018, is scheduled to take part in CIIE again in November, and it now focuses on deals of exporting chili pastes and dry chilies to China, Gashora Farm’s managing director Dieudonne Twahirwa told Xinhua in a recent interview.
Gashora Farm is also expected to export between 10,000 tons to 50,000 tons of dry chilies to China annually for a period of five years, under a contract it signed with a Chinese company in 2019, Twahirwa revealed.
He said the deal of exporting chili pastes could progressively bring the company some 30 million U.S. dollars in revenues.
“We shall be looking at how we can strengthen the relationship with our current customers. We shall also be looking at how we can work together to honor the commitments under the contract on both sides, and how we can adapt to technologies to facilitate our business,” Twahirwa talked about his expectations for the third CIIE.
The businessman also said he expects to establish partnerships with more Chinese companies with the facilitation by the CIIE.
Rwandan farmers grow chilies without applying chemicals and much fertilizer, and Rwandan chili paste has a unique taste with great aroma, according to him.
For Twahirwa, the Chinese market is stable and reliable, because of the nature of the Chinese importers, he said, adding that Gashora Farm’s Chinese partners provide fixed contracts and prices without price fluctuations.
He also said penetrating into the Chinese market has opened opportunities for a large number of farmers not only in Rwanda but also in the region because it provides them a reliable market with huge demands.
The chili export to China has multiple benefits, Pie Ntwali, spokesperson of Rwandan National Agricultural Export Development Board (NAEB), told Xinhua.
It partly helps increase Rwanda’s export volumes and therefore acts as one of the country’s foreign exchange-earners by bringing in export receipts, said Pie, adding that it also offers jobs to both Rwandan entrepreneurs and farmers.
In the case of this year’s CIIE, he said it will present an opportunity to promote Rwanda’s brands.
NAEB expects the market reach of Rwandan exports to be expanded and to see business-to-business engagements with the help of the expo, he said.