Africa can’t just remain a story about huge potential that never materializes-Kagame
Rwanda’s President Paul Kagame today called 1000 delegates attending Global African Investment summit in the capital Kigali that it is time to pull their socks and change Africa out of biting poverty.
“Africa can’t just remain a story about huge potential that never materializes and something has to be done,” the President said.
For President Kagame, postponement of African priorities and commitments are the most expensive mistakes Africa makes.
He said that the integration of Africa where travel documents and visas are huge hindrance to free movement of people and goods can be overcome. President Kagame confirmed that the East Africa Community (EAC) composed of six member states (Rwanda, Burundi, Uganda, Tanzania, Kenya and South Sudan) turned this into reality.
This high-level meeting held under the theme “Accelerating African economic integration through investment and trade” bringing together delegates from across the continent is considered a good opportunity for governments and private sector to synergise for real radical changes.
“Tripartite free trade area is an initiative to join the East African Community (EAC), COMESA (Common Market for Eastern and Southern Africa) and SADC (Southern African Development Community) into a single economic zone composed by more than 600 million people is almost half of Africa… the stakes are high because these bold efforts to translate ideals and commitments into reality,” President Kagame.
Development of human capital, infrastructure and avoidance of delays in implementation of projects are key to fully realizing investment and trade on the African Continent.
President of Uganda, Yoweri Kaguta Museveni also featured on the panel alongside President Kagame. Museveni said that China is the best investor in Africa, western countries should take a leaf from.
“China needs to teach US economics because they see Africa’s opportunities.”
The Global African Investment summit organized by COMESA in partnership with Government of Rwanda is the first meeting of this kind to be held in the African continent.
Meanwhile, Rwanda’s conducive environment for investment has pushed the country’s economy, with GDP growing from $5.669 billion in 2010 to projected $10 billion this year.
According to Rwanda Development Board, Foreign Direct Investment will hit $1.5 billion this year, up from $251 million in 2010.