The Korea International Cooperation Agency (KOICA) on Thursday signed the Record of Discussion (R/D) with the Ministry of Finance and Economic Planning and the Ministry of Education for the implementation of the Rwanda Coding Academy (RCA) Capacity Development Project worth US$ 7.1 million (approximately Rwf7.1 billion).
The Government of Rwanda will provide the counterpart funding of US$ 800,000 for the project, making the total value of project US$ 7.9 million or approximately Rwf 7.9 billion, according to MINECOFIN.
The signing ceremony was virtually held in observance of the current health measures to prevent the spread of COVID-19 and the R/D was signed by Dr. Uzziel Ndagijimana, the Minister of Finance and Economic Planning, Dr. Valentine Uwamariya, the Minister of Education and Chon Gyong Shik, the Country Director of KOICA Rwanda Office.
“We thank the Government of the Republic of Korea for partnering with us in this important project to enhance software skills development in Rwanda. This support comes to support our National Strategy for Transformation Pillar, with a focus on making Rwanda a Globally Competitive Knowledge –based Economy”, Minister Ndagijimana said.
Minister Uwamariya noted that the funding will position RCA into a centre of excellence for ICT education and help achieve national targets and aspirations
“This project will make Rwanda Coding Academy a center of excellence in Software Development which will be providing our students with high quality practical skills as required by the software industry at both national and international level, and this will hugely contribute to the national aspiration of making our country a regional ICT hub,” Dr. Uwamariya said.
“KOICA has three priority sectors in Rwanda, agriculture, education, and ICT, and this project cuts across the two important sectors, education and ICT,” said Chon Gyong Shik, Country Director of KOICA Rwanda Office.
“As the main development agency of the Korean government, through this project, we will contribute to the GoR’s education and economic development plans as well as the achievement of SDG 4,” he added
RCA opened in 2019, benchmarking the model of Korea’s Software Meister High School, with the goal of developing competent software developers who can promote industrial and economic development of Rwanda. Since its birth, the school has accepted two intakes of students totaling to 118. The third intake is slated for September this year.
With KOICA’s intervention, RCA will be equipped with high quality infrastructure and equipment as well as capacity to provide specialized education programs to students. It will ultimately benefit the students who are at the heart of RCA’s mission and contribute to the Sustainable Development Goal 4; Education for All.
Since 1991, KOICA has been implementing its grant aid programs in Rwanda, disbursing about USD 150 million through various projects and capacity building programs. KOICA Rwanda Office was officially opened in 2011. KOICA currently has over 10 on-going projects in Rwanda in education, agriculture and ICT sectors. With the outbreak of COVID-19, KOICA also supported Government in response to the pandemic by providing a mobile testing vehicle, walk-through testing booths and personal protective equipment (PPE) worth about USD 1 million.