Johannesburg, Jan 11 (Forbes): One of Africa’s long reigning leaders and President to East African country Rwanda says Africa should start engaging in continental trade and maximising export to the world to reduce African dependency on foreign funding.
In a recent interview with Forbes Africa Kagame emphasised the importance of localising production and maximising export to the rest of the world, saying that will encourage African economies to be self dependent and increasing players in the global economy made in the continent.
Paul Kagame is the current Chairman of the African Union preceding the role from former Chad Prime Minister and Diplomat, Moussa Faki Mahamat. Kagame assumed his role in the AU from Jan 2018 and has been championing African Economic Development since.
The Rwandan president is best known for his diversity in parliament by having a majority parliamentary cabinet represented by women. His made in Rwanda strategy qualified him as African of the year at the 2018 All Africa Business Leaders Awards (AABLA) which is an annual event that honors business excellence and leaders who have played a significant role in the business industry and communities.
Kagame has spent the previous year improving economic climate and conditions in his home country Rwanda. His most important highlights include securing a contract with Alibaba and improving the ease of doing business in Rwanda which was attested by the world bank.
Whilst overcoming the milestones of a painful past that has Rwanda stills in scars, where more than 1 million people lost their lives during the 1994 Rwanda genocide which sparked by a war between the Hutus and tutsi’s, Kagame mentioned that the country and leadership still remembers and honors those atrocities but refused to be haunted by the past ghosts.
His new business intervention has ensured that Rwanda heals such past through empowerment and economic development. The country also scooped a three year contract as a tourism partner with Football club, Arsenal. Late last Kagame hosted more than 50 members of states from different African countries of in it’s Capital city, Kigali.
The conference was to address and discuss African continental free trade with projections of a single market that has a possibility of generating more than $3.4 trillion of combined GDP in the continent and can benefit an estimated 1.2 billion people. It reported that so far only 49 countries have signed up for the continental free trade area.
Paul Kagame also emphasised on the importance of a friendly political climate between governments and citizens particularly to young people by not only delivering service but buy creating a space of participation between the government and young people.
The Rwandan leader has now expanded his business insight from developing Rwanda to the rest of the African continent as the current AU chair and says that if Africa becomes independent of foreign funding this will give voice and strength of policy making in the African region outside the influence of foreign funding.
His made in Rwanda strategy has seen the country seen the local trade deficit value rise from previous 36% $543 million to 69% which makes about $943 million and this local producers fast becoming empowered to produce for the local and export markets.
His strategy if implemented well see many Africans become global entrepreneurs through a maximised export business coming from Africa.
By Ziyanda Yono