Govt, AfDB sign Rwf39bn skills development loan deal

The government has secured a $50 million (about Rwf39.1 billion) credit facility from the African development Bank (AfDB) to finance the third phase of the Skills, Employability and Entrepreneurship programme (SEEP111). The programme seeks to reduce skills mismatch in the labour market, promote innovative, entrepreneurial development, among others.
AfDB resident representative Negatu Makonnen (L) exchanges documents with Minister Gatete in Kigali yesterday. (Timothy Kisambira)
AfDB resident representative Negatu Makonnen (L) exchanges documents with Minister Gatete in Kigali yesterday. (Timothy Kisambira)

The government has secured a $50 million (about Rwf39.1 billion) credit facility from the African development Bank (AfDB) to finance the third phase of the Skills, Employability and Entrepreneurship programme (SEEP111).

The programme seeks to reduce skills mismatch in the labour market, promote innovative, entrepreneurial development, among others.

Efforts aimed at providing relevant skills on the labour market could be fast-tracked, thanks to a new African Development Bank (AfDB) concessional loan.

The $50 million (about Rwf39.1 billion) loan will finance the third phase of Skills, Employability and Entrepreneurship programme (SEEPIII), according to Minister for Finance and Economic Planning Amb Claver Gatete. 

Gatete said the programme will also play a critical role in the promotion of value added production, and strengthen micro, small-and-medium enterprises, particularly those engaged in manufacturing and agro-processing.

This will spur job-creation, especially for the youth, Minister Gatete told Business Times yesterday.

SEEP III is designed to further deepen reforms and consolidate the achievements realised during SEEP I and II, which focused on building critical mass of TVET skills, business advisory services and creation of new start-up businesses, the minister added at the signing of the loan deal at the ministry head offices in Kigali.

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SEEP III will build on SEEP I and II, which focused on building critical mass of TVET skills. (File)

The programme was developed jointly by AfDB and government in collaboration with the private sector and development partners, including Germany, Sweden, the US, the European Commission, the Netherlands, the UK, and the World Bank.

The goal of SEEP is to support government’s policy reform effort to promote inclusive growth and poverty reduction, reduce skills mismatch between supply and demand in the labour market; and promote innovative, entrepreneurial development.

Gatete said the programme will specifically focus on value addition in manufacturing, agro processing, construction, and hospitality sectors.

He added that the financing will address the skills gap the country faces and promote market-driven training and innovative entrepreneurship.

Speaking at the event, Negatu Makonnen, the AfDB country representative, said investing in skills development and modern infrastructure will ensure sustainable growth.

“We will, therefore, continue to support initiatives that supplement government’s efforts toward creation of 200,000 off-farm jobs, and development of its human resources to help it realise its growth targets,” said Makonnen.

Meanwhile, Dr Papias Malimba Musafiri, the Minister for Education, has said the programme will accelerate availability of skilled labour force that will enhance productivity, promote economic transformation and industrialisation.

“This is an important milestone toward improving the quality of life of Rwandans,” Dr Musafiri said. The programme outcomes include enhanced employable skills and improved entrepreneurship and business development.

The programme will thus contribute to attainment of relevant Sustainable Development Goals, he added.

 

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