Rwanda to participate in G7 Leaders Summit

France announced this week that it was looking forward to hosting Rwanda and President Paul Kagame in meetings that will focus on addressing inequalities.

Rwanda is among the only five African nations invited to take part in the upcoming G7 Leaders' Summit, France announced on Monday.

G7 is a club of top rich nations (major economic powers) and France is the current chair the club.

France announced this week that it was looking forward to hosting Rwanda and President Paul Kagame in meetings that will focus on addressing inequalities.

"To fight the battle against inequality, France is adjusting the format of @G7fr, involving new partners. Rwanda and its President @PaulKagame will be in Biarritz for #G7France," France tweeted.

Rwanda was invited along Egypt, South Africa, Senegal, Burkina Faso and the African Union Commission (AUC).

Amb. Olivier Nduhungirehe, the State Minister in the Ministry of Foreign Affairs and Cooperation in Charge of the East African Community, told The New Times that Rwanda was invited because of its recent role in the African Union affairs.

"Rwanda was invited as the former chair of the African Union, Egypt was invited as the current chair of the Union and South Africa as the incoming chair," he said.

The three countries form what is called the "Troika" of the African Union.

On the other hand, Senegal was invited as the current leader of the New Partnership for African Development (NEPAD) and Burkina Faso as the chair of G5 Sahel.

"The French Presidency wanted to involve Africa in the summit but also in the preparatory meetings," Nduhungirehe noted.

The minister highlighted that the five African countries have taken part in preparatory meetings and will take part in other subsequent meetings that lead up to the Leaders' Summit.

This month, the countries will participate in other meetings, which will discuss women entrepreneurship, digital transformation and transparency in public procurement.

Believably, these are essential conditions to combat inequality of opportunity, digital inclusion, and access to finance.

The outcomes from the meetings are expected to be adopted at the main summit in Biarritz, France later this month.

This year's summit organised by France is motivated by the French President's belief that rich nations cannot continue to define the world order alone.

Last year in September at the United Nations General Assembly in New York, President Emmanuel Macron stressed that “the time when a club of rich countries could alone define the world’s balances is long gone.”

That is why he wanted the French G7 Presidency in 2019 to be an opportunity to adjust the format of the group, the French Presidency said.

Macron wanted to involve major democracies with major regional influence, African partners to build a renewed partnership and key representatives of civil society.

The aim was to firm coalitions around projects and producing solutions to combat all forms of inequality more "effectively, legitimately and tangibly."

editor@newtimesrwanda.com