RWANDA: A factory will convert plastic waste into paving stones in Nyarugenge

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RWANDA: A factory will convert plastic waste into paving stones in Nyarugenge©Aisyaqilumaranas/Shutterstock

A new project aims to convert single-use plastics into paving stones in Rwanda. The waste will be transformed in a factory in Mageragere, Nyarugenge district. Prosper Muhirwa, a member of the Private Sector Federation (PSF) is funding the work with $3 million.

The partnership signed in June 2021 between the Rwanda Environment Management Authority (REMA) and the Private Sector Federation (PSF) is bearing fruit. Prosper Muhirwa, one of the federation’s members, recently invested $3 million in the construction of a plant to recycle plastic waste into paving stones. The plant will handle polyethylene terephthalate (PET) bottles, plastic straws, spoons and knives, plastic bags and plastic packaging materials. The future facility will be located in Mageragere, Nyarugenge District, Rwanda.

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“We plan to recycle plastics into pavers and blocks producing 500 square meters per day. The main objective is to preserve the environment, provide affordable and weather-resistant housing for the community and create sustainable and green jobs through plastic recycling,” explains investor Prosper Muhirwa. Work on the site is expected to begin in early 2022.

Reducing pollution

The recycling project being developed in the town of Mageragere will also help reduce plastic waste pollution. This phenomenon is the cause of the destruction of ecosystems. PSF aims to mobilize 690.6 million Rwandan francs (nearly 560,400 euros) for the “Sustainable Management of Single-Use Plastics” project implemented by REMA. The five-year project aims to eliminate single-use plastic from the Rwandan landscape.

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In 2019, the country enacted a law banning the manufacture, import, use and sale of plastic carrier bags and single-use plastic items. The two-year grace period given to single-use plastic manufacturers to stop all supplies or sales ended in September 2021. Currently, manufacturers are requesting an extension so they can work with recyclers rather than shutting down operations permanently. REMA’s decision is pending.

Inès Magoum

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