Today President Kagame took part of a panel discussion on “Maximizing Finance for Development” at the World Bank Annual Meeting. The session focused on the continued evolution and refinement of the private sector’s role in development, as well as the more strategic and efficient use of public resource.
On the subject of starting a new Government and attracting money for basic infrastructure President Kagame said: “Maximizing Finance for Development is quite scarce; funds cannot come from public or private sector alone; they must come together to do what is the best for the country. In our case, both were at very low levels, private sector more than the public sector so government had to fill the gaps. Investors often wouldn’t consider a small market such as Rwanda as a viable investment that would yield good returns. We worked round the clock to ensure that this perception does not become a reality and that is what we have done and continue to do. We had to convince people that this is a country and a people that are worth investing in.”
He further added that:” There are a few examples of how Rwanda did invest in itself by using some public funds. The country, in partnership with private sector had to create and invest in a telecom company that grew and later attracted investment In the areas of tourism. We then invested in hotels, conference facilities and an airline which have attracted investment. What started as “not a viable market” has become a market where many key players come to invest.”
The discussion aims to carry forward the momentum from the Addis Ababa summit on Development Finance to drastically overhaul the global approach to development finance.