Rwanda eyes tourists, investors from Germany’s Rhineland-Palatinate

L-R: German ambassador to Rwanda, Peter Woeste, the Rhineland-Palatinate Minister President Malu Dreyer, and Rwanda’s Local Government Minister Francis Kaboneka hold hands following the talks in Kigali yesterday. Frederic Byumvuhore.

The Government of Rwanda and the German state of Rhineland-Palatinate have pledged to maintain their partnership in the interest of their people.

The decision was reached Monday in Kigali during a meeting between the Minister for Local Government, Francis Kaboneka, and the visiting Rhineland-Palatine Minister President Malu Dreyer, who is leading a 35-member delegation.

The delegation has been in the country since September 29 during which they have visited different projects.

The visit, officials said, aims at exploring new areas of cooperation between the two parties.  

The delegation is composed of different officials, including cabinet ministers, lawmakers and technical staff in different areas, among others.

After meeting the German delegation, Kaboneka told journalists that both parties want to expand their areas of collaboration so the peoples from both sides can benefit more.

On the side of Rwanda, Kaboneka noted that, in addition to the areas already under the existing partnership framework such as education, agriculture and health, the two parties want to extend their partnership to business and tourism.  

“We want to strengthen our partnership so it can better benefit the people on both sides. Rwanda is investing a lot in the tourism sector since we have touristic areas that could attract many tourists.

“We are considering discussing this sector in the coming days. Rhineland-Palatinate is big and it has so many people who tour different countries around the world. We want to interest them in visiting Rwanda too, and in large numbers,” Kaboneka said.

The minister added that both parties want to see increased volumes of trade both in the form of imports and exports.

“We also want to open doors to investors (from Rhineland-Palatinate). This will promote the export of our locally made products to Germany as well as bring in more imports from there. It may occur that the investors are actually willing to come and invest in Rwanda,” Kaboneka noted.

Minister President Dreyer also said that the bilateral ties should be consolidated and broadened to new areas.

“We want to develop our partnership further to look into the future and bring in new projects. Yesterday (on Sunday) we attended an exhibition involving young Rwandans who showed us their creativity. We are also interested in helping with knowledge transfer in the industry,” Dreyer said.

For over the past 35 years, the Rwanda-Rhineland Palatinate cooperation has mainly been active in infrastructure development, health and education sectors, promotion and exchange of culture and sports, as well as capacity building.