Rwandan president Paul Kagame. (File Picture: Xinhua/Li Muzi)

INTERNATIONAL - Rwanda's economic growth slowed to 4% year-on-year in the second quarter of 2017, data showed yesterday, though the finance minister said he was expecting an improvement in the rest of the year. 

The figure was almost half the 7.5% reported by the statistics office for the same period a year earlier. Wholesale and retail trade contracted by 6percent, while agriculture expanded by 6%, the National Institute of Statistics of Rwanda said. Industry grew by 1% while services surged 7%, it added.

Finance Minister Claver Gatete said he expected the third and fourth quarters to perform better than the first two, supported by stronger activity in construction, services and agriculture. “There is a clear improvement and for the next two quarters we are going back to normal high growth,” Gatete said. A new GDP projection for 2017 will be issued around October, Gatete said.