ITC and Burundi discuss medium-term trade prospects, mission planned

29 September 2013
ITC News
Executive Director announces mission to Burundi within the month

After a wide-ranging discussion with a delegation from Burundi on 26 September, ITC’s Executive Director announced that a needs-assessment mission to the landlocked country would be despatched within the month.

Led by Burundi’s Ambassador, Pierre Claver Ndayiragije, the delegation included Jérémie Banigwaninzigo, Director General of Trade from the Ministry of Commerce and Industry, Léonard Ntibagirirwa, National Coordinator of the Enhanced Integrated Framework (EIF), and Christian Nkengurutse, Secretary General of Burundi’s Federal Chamber of Commerce and Industry.

The delegation shared with the ITC some salient points about Burundi’s economic prospects going forward. In the medium-term, regional integration will be very important for Burundi given its size and location, as will the development of tourism, horticulture and trade-facilitation. Burundi’s economy is largely dependent on subsistence agriculture and its main export is coffee. The government is exploring ways to diversify the economy.

Noting the important role that chambers of commerce play as multipliers of ITC’s work, Executive Director Arancha González announced that ITC would send a mission to Burundi within a month to build on the discussions in Geneva and to evaluate Burundi’s needs in consultation with national counterparts.