Rwanda to host Commonwealth Heads of Government Meeting in 2020

Soldiers of the Coldstream Guards with flags of the 53 Commonwealth member states in London on Thursday. Village Urugwiro.

Rwanda has been selected as host of the next Commonwealth Heads of Government Meeting (CHOGM), to be held in 2020.

UK Prime Minister Teresa May announced the development at a news conference held at the end of this year’s CHOGM that took place in the British capital, London.

President Paul Kagame and the First Lady Jeannette Kagame attended the summit.

Rwanda will be the second African country to host the meeting after Uganda hosted it in 2007.

To host the meeting, sources at the summit in London say Rwanda was up against bids by Fiji and Malaysia, but the latter is said to have pulled out before the meeting.

The Commonwealth is a community of 53 countries – mostly former British colonies – with a combined population of about 2.4 billion.

Rwanda joined the bloc in 2009 becoming the second member to be admitted into the Commonwealth club of nations without any direct colonial ties to British, after Mozambique.

Hosting the summit is a huge endorsement to national efforts of becoming an internationally recognised meetings and conference destination.

In 2014, Rwanda developed the Meetings, Incentives, Conferences and Events (MICE) strategy that seeks to make the country a top tourism and conference hub.

Rwanda has in recent years hosted major international summits and meetings including; World Economic Forum for Africa, African Union Summit, Transform Africa, Next Einstein Forum, among others.

Kigali is this year expected to host a number of high profile meetings, including the eighth FIFA Council Meeting.

The City of Kigali in March announced that they were working on city road network expansion meant to facilitate easy traffic flow in alignment with becoming a conference hub.

The CHOGM retreat yesterday also agreed that Prince Charles will take over as the next head of the Commonwealth from Queen Elizabeth II.

editorial@newtimes.co.rw

 

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