Kigali will, this week, host a two-day summit, bringing together leaders and experts from across the world to exchange ideas on Africa’s integration into the Global Economy.
The conference is organised by Eisenhower Fellowships (EF), an organisation that was started in 1953 in honour of the 34th US President Dwight Eisenhower.
The summit, which opens Friday, will be themed around Africa’s integration in multiple aspects such as trade, work, technology, governance and partnerships.
President Paul Kagame is scheduled to grace the event.
The delegates include top government officials, business leaders, academics, scientists and journalists.
Participants will look into subjects such as new partnerships aimed at creating a prosperous world that reverses rising inequality and ideal frameworks for national, regional, continental and global cooperation to drive inclusive economic growth.
The organisation’s mission is to identify, empower, and connect innovative leaders through a transformative fellowship experience and lifelong engagement in a global network of dynamic change agents committed to creating a world more peaceful, prosperous and just.
More than 1,600 influential leaders that include former heads of state, ministers, legislators, business executives, nonprofit heads, prominent scientists, urban planners, educators, artists and journalists from 100 countries have participated in Eisenhower Fellowships since its founding.
Rwanda currently has seven Fellows.
This is the first time that the summit will be held in Africa since the Fellowship was started in 1953. Previous summits have been held in Dubai, Beijing, Dublin, Santiago, Chile and Malaga.
In a message from the EF president George De Lama, the organisation looks forward to strengthening it collaboration with Africa.
“We relish this wonderful opportunity to deepen and broaden our commitment to developing outstanding leaders in Africa,” he said in a message delivered prior to the conference.
He added: “We will explore substantive subjects of regional connectivity, technology and sustainable development,”
Organisers say that the theme and subject topic of the summit was partly informed by the fact that it will be held at the same venue where the Africa Continental Free Trade Area (AfCFTA), which recently came into force, was signed in March 2018.
The expected outcomes and impacts of the summit include recommendations on accelerated Africa’s Integration into the Global Economy and fostering Intra African trade, emergence of innovative ways to reframe education systems and skills development to prepare youth for future trends of work.
Florence Gatome a member of the organizing committee of the summit and an Eisenhower Fellow told The New Times that participants will have the opportunity to network and engage with leaders in their sectors.
“The conference will also be attended by EF fellows from across the world, who would like to link with local counterparts in their sectors, as well as tour the country. To this end, the third day of the conference has been dedicated to touring Rwanda,”
“There are also opportunities for EF fellows and participants to explore business opportunities in the country, and meetings have been set up for interested participants,” Gatome who is also Country Senior Partner at PricewaterhouseCoopers Rwanda said.
The summit also aims at coming up with strategies for bridging the digital divide for a globally inclusive socioeconomic development agenda and redesigning policies that will accelerate the free movement of ideas, people, goods and services.
The conference has high-level panelists including government ministers in Trade and ICT, CEOs from large companies, Africa Union, International Universities, UNECA, COMESA, amongst other organisations.
This will ensure that engagements are at the right level and actions from the conference can be taken forward.
Delegates will also partake in tourism activities across the country to as well as gain insights into various investment opportunities in the country.