Gabiro Agribusiness Hub, Rwanda
Gabiro Agribusiness Hub is situated in a sub-humid region with an annual rainfall of only 700mm. By harnessing new technology and water from the Akagera River, the Rwanda Development Board has established a revolutionary agri-farm with an irrigatable area of 16,000ha.


Rwanda’s agricultural sector faces numerous challenges, including limited water resources, outdated farming practices, and inadequate infrastructure. These factors hinder productivity, impede economic growth, and threaten food security for rural communities. Additionally, the need to attract private investment to the agriculture sector is paramount for sustainable development and transformation.



By leveraging innovative irrigation technologies, including drip and sprinkler systems, the project aims to establish a modern agricultural hub for intensive farming and animal husbandry.

SMEC undertook project management and construction supervision for phase one which was implemented under a design-build contract with FIDIC modified conditions.  Scope extended to design review and modification, quality control, contract administration and preparation of O&M documentation.

Key features of phase one included:

  • Advanced Irrigation Technology: At the heart of Gabiro Agribusiness Hub (GAH) is a modern, extensive drip irrigation system designed for maximum water efficiency. This technology, combined with sprinklers and other techniques, enables the project to maximize the use of limited water resources and optimize crop yields.
  • Infrastructure Upgrade: The project entails significant infrastructural investments, including pumping stations, lined canals, roads, and power lines. This robust infrastructure ensures reliable delivery of water and power, while improving logistics for both agricultural operations and community access.
  • Capacity Building: GAH established demonstration farms and training centers to teach local farmers modern agricultural techniques. The project has a strong focus on knowledge transfer, ensuring the community has the skills to optimize the use of new technologies and sustainably manage the GAH system long-term.

In supervising construction of the project, SMEC assessed works for compliance with agreed designs and material quantities and ensured all the works met quality standards.



Phase 1 covered an area of 5,600ha.  The newly irrigated land promises to have a significant positive impact on Rwanda’s agriculture sector and rural livelihoods.

By improving irrigation infrastructure and introducing modern farming practices, GAH aims to enhance food security, raise incomes, and promote exports of high-value agricultural products. The construction of community modern houses and the establishment of demonstration farms will contribute to improving living standards and capacity building within local communities.

Through these efforts, the project is poised to become a model for sustainable agricultural development, demonstrating the potential for economic prosperity and environmental stewardship in Rwanda and beyond.