Welcome to the era of MADE IN AFRICA.
Yes!!! Rwanda is changing the narrative of Africa. Smartphones in Africa will soon lose its “Made in China” label; as Rwanda recently launched Africa’s first ever smartphone manufacturing plant in Kigali.
In a bid to focus on ICT and also becoming a regional technology hub; President Paul Kagame on Monday (7th October 2019) officiated in the launching of Mara Phones manufacturing plant in the country’s capital – Kigali. Mara group in collaboration with Google as part of the Android One Program will manufacture two “Made in Rwanda” smartphones – Mara X and Mara Z.
— Presidency | Rwanda (@UrugwiroVillage) October 8, 2019
These phones will be the first entirely Made in Africa smartphones. In Egypt, Ethiopia, Algeria and South Africa, companies assemble smartphones; but the components are been imported. The motherboards, sub-boards and the entire manufacturing process of the Mara phones will take place in Rwanda.
Mara X and Mara Z will run on Google’s Android Operating System (OS); and will battle for supremacy with the likes of Samsung and Tecno. According to the CEO Mara Group Mr. Ashish Thakkar, Mara X will cost 175,750 Rwandan francs (US$190) while Mara Z will cost 120,250 Rwandan francs (US$130).
The construction cost of the Mara phones manufacturing plant is about US$24 million; and it will employ over 200 workers while making up to 1,200 phones per day.
The presence of this phone manufacturing plant in Rwanda is a step in the right direction for Africa’s involvement in technology and digital innovation and manufacturing.
Mara Group will also be launching another manufacturing plant in South Africa on the 17th of October, 2019.