Brazzaville, 29 April 2018

President Kagame today attended the first Heads of State and Government Summit on Congo Basin Climate Climate and the Blue Fund for the Congo Basin.

Set up in 2016 in Marrakesh, the one-day summit aims to promote blue economy programs and projects, in order to help fight poverty among riverside populations and mitigate the effects of climate change.

Speaking at the opening of the Summit, President Kagame pointed out that the African continent’s prosperity requires that leaders go the extra step to mitigate climate change and develop the continent’s economies more sustainably.

“Preserving the waters and forests of the Congo Basin is essential for sustainable development, not only in Africa but other parts of the world as well.The water resources of the Congo Basin connect our countries and support the livelihoods of hundreds of millions of people. This makes us interdependent on many levels,” President Kagame said.

The President further noted that in order to safeguard food security, public health and economic opportunities, African countries must cooperate more in managing shared natural resources.

With approximately 220 million hectares of forest, the Congo Basin region is the second ecological block of the planet after the Amazon.

The Congo Basin covers mainly; Angola, Burundi, Cameroon, Central African Republic, Democratic Republic of Congo, Equatorial Guinea, Gabon, the Republic of the Congo, Rwanda, Tanzania and Zambia.

Also in attendance were; the King of Morocco Mohamed VI, President Ali Bongo Ondimba of Gabon and Coordinator of the Committee of African Heads of State and Government on Climate Change (CAHOSCC), President Mahamadou Issoufou of Niger and Chairperson  of the Sahel Climate Commission, as well as the host President Denis Sassou-Nguesso of the Republic of Congo and Chairperson of the Congo Basin Climate Commission.