Bonn, 16 November 2011

President Kagame has called on developing nations to continue strengthening governance and institutional coordination by establishing regulatory frameworks and ensuring benefits are equitably shared in order to achieve green and sustainable economies.

While delivering a recorded video message at the Bonn 2011 Nexus conference running from November 16-18 in Bonn, Germany, President Kagame said:

“It is important to engage women, civil society and the private sector. In developing countries, the involvement of women is particularly critical given that they produce up to 80% of food and provide 90% of water and fuel wood. We also need to educate our children and raise their awareness of the prudent use of water, energy, and land. This will result in better productivity and a more resilient environment for future generations”.

President Kagame also underscored the significance of regional and international cooperation and foreign direct investment in ensuring coordinated use of resources. President Kagame pointed out that besides job creation, capacity building and creating the necessary infrastructure, foreign direct aid brings with it innovative technologies that can be used for sustainable harvesting of water and harnessing energy resources as well as for sustainable farming for food security.

“I believe the first solution lies in enhanced management of what we have and finding innovative ways of producing more with the limited resources. The modern technologies at our disposal provide the means to do this. What we need is the common understanding and political will to use them. At the level of policy formulation and implementation, we must adopt the nexus approach. It certainly creates synergies, and in our experience, facilitates more effective financial resource mobilization and allocation”.

President Kagame told the conference that in Rwanda, environmental and resource-conscious economic development is promoted as an integral part of the national vision:

Within this context, we have created an environmental management authority, which among other things, ensures that an environmental and social impact assessment is carried out for every project before implementation. Furthermore, district level development plans include environmental and resource protection actions. In fact, the performance contracts signed by District Mayors every year include preventing soil erosion and protecting marshlands; as well as access to clean water and electricity. They must incorporate energy efficient measures such as the use of biomass and promoting the use of biogas for domestic application; ecological sanitation, forest cover and others. To make these plans and systems work better, we plan to embed more modern and relevant techniques”.

The primary objective of the Bonn2011 Nexus Conference is to bring together a broad range of stakeholders from the water, energy and food sectors in an effort to improve understanding of the interdependencies and develop a joint perspective on the common challenges. The conference will also showcase innovative solutions and help forge a common policy agenda to address the water, food and energy challenges. In attendance at the conference is Dr. Norbert Röttgen, Federal Minister for the Environment, Nature Conservation and Nuclear Safety among other high ranking officials.