Kigali, 26 February 2014
President Kagame today at his office received the Swedish Finance Minister, Anders Borg who has held the post since 2006 and is in the country as part of a 3 day nation tour covering Kenya, Uganda and Rwanda to discuss future cooperation and partnerships between Sweden and Africa starting with the East African region.
Sweden’s annual development aid to Rwanda is 30 Million US Dollars. Several Swedish universities have cooperation agreements with the National University of Rwanda whereby Rwandan lecturers and students go to Sweden to pursue graduate and post-graduate studies.
“For Sweden, Africa is now an important market to target, a continent that has many emerging countries, much more so than it was the case in the previous years. Aid to Rwanda has now been restored and we have had a development aid strategy that span 3 years, the first one went from 2010- 2013, but we are now working on development new agreements for the period 2014-2017. Those are the discussions that we are having with them now; these funds will be channelled to different sectors and activities for a period of 3 years.”
Sweden has been Rwanda’s main bilateral partner in the Nordic region; Rwanda’s cooperation with Sweden began after the 1994 genocide against the Tutsi. In 2007 Rwanda opened an Embassy in Stockholm. In 2010 Sweden opened an embassy in Rwanda, through upgrading of SIDA’s existing section offices. The Embassy in Kigali is headed by a Chargé d’Affaires and a nonresident Ambassador who is based in Kampala.
The Kingdom of Sweden is the largest Country in the Nordics region, third largest in the EU by area only behind France and Spain (almost double the United Kingdom). With a population of 9.5 million, Sweden is also the most populated country in the Nordics. It is the largest economy and the most diplomatically influential Country in a region ranked by the UN as the wealthiest globally.