Rwanda shouldn’t wait for favours from anywhere – UN

Countries like Rwanda that show resilience in transforming their economies “cannot wait for favourable winds, said Executive Secretary for United Nations Economic Commission for Africa, Carlos Lopes.

Lopes was speaking at the 12th National Dialogue Council (Umushyikirano).

“Rwanda must generate its own winds to sail through stormy weather to change the course of its economic and social history,” he said.

For Carlos, Rwanda has all the potentials to emulate Singapore, Finland and Uruguay-that have moved from scratch to sounding economies.

Lopes believes that with good governance, Rwanda can transform like Singapore or Finland did.

Citing Finland, through public private partnership, Lopes said the country’s investment into electronics industry, created a gigantic factory, NOKIA that conquered the electronics market.

Indeed, through Rwanda Development Board (RDB), the government in collaboration with the Private Sector Federation, has launched the Public Private Dialogue, the two engage in a discussion seeking a common ground to spur transformation.

According to RDB Chief Operations Officer, Claire Akamanzi; “The alliance between the public-private will boost Rwanda’s economic transformation.”

Andrew Mwenda, a Ugandan veteran Journalist, who made a presentation on Rwanda’s economic journey since 1994, commended Rwanda’s home-grown solutions for speeding up development.

He said Rwanda’s GDP was Rwf670b in 2000, when President Kagame took over. Today, it’s Rwf5trillion, almost folds growth.

“Exports have gone from $70m to $703m today,” he said.

He said this has been possible due to political stability, rooted from domestic political arrangements, which have helped the country maintain a steady growth over the past two decades.

Lopes also cited initiatives like Rwanda’s sovereign Fund-known as Agaciro Development Fund as a an example  of mobilizing domestic savings, much like Singapore introduced  compulsory Central Provident Fund.

Launched by President Paul Kagame in2012, Agaciro Fund has generated about $35m.

Umushyikirano itself, where many policies have been developed, Lopes said, “is a unique opportunity to fully explore “possibilities for a dynamic and resilient Rwanda.”

 

By: Dan Ngabonziza