RE: “Incentivise software development in Rwanda” (The New Times, December 22).
I just want to put a caveat to the idea of Government owning the source code—I don't think that's a good idea. Rather Government, as an enabler, will benefit when these software development companies are providing gainful employment to our youngsters and are paying taxes on a regular basis when they are profitable and exporting Rwandan products.
Also the incentives will also help the local companies in exploring new markets elsewhere on the continent. But we can't export what we are not producing yet.
Rwanda is a good place to test a product/concept….and our entrepreneurs should be bolder to market what we have been able to make or manufacture and in all sectors. By the way, where are the Rwandan venture capitalists? I leave the banks alone for now as they have been getting enough beating from everyone in the business community.
Wealth is not created when few tycoons have fat bank accounts but rather when they channel these funds into the energy of these many startups we have and which desperately need capital to get to the next level.
Now to our universities and IPRCs should lobby and secure funding for accelerator programs/business incubators so they actually play the role of think tanks and profit from these activities. They should reach out to business people in our communities to have meaningful impact and long-term sustainability.
Our world is constantly evolving and our ivory towers (institutions of higher learning) need to re-calibrate in order not to become obsolete at least in some areas which will be very unfortunate.
Finally, let us not add unnecessary layers of approval and bureaucracy to our nascent industries as silicon valley was produced by ideas (knowledge), capital and enabling environment...period.
If Apple had to ask permission to the US FCC (Federal Communications Commission) and the US Department of Justice, then today Apple would probably not be doing business in China, Russia and it would be an obscure company somewhere in the west coast of the US. Same applies to the likes of Uber—imagine the strong lobbyists of New York yellow cab having to approve the business model of Uber