KIGALI - Rwanda offers one of the best investment opportunities on the African continent and doing business in the country has been eased by a set of reforms that favour investors, a renown Germany entrepreneur told The New Times yesterday.
Christian Angermayer who is leading a group of 48 prospective investors, including journalists, said he and the group he leads chose to visit and explore opportunities in Rwanda simply because the country’s business reforms were “attractive.”
The group of potential investors arrived in the country on Saturday and includes entrepreneurs from Germany, Austria and Britain.
“For me, Rwanda was my first starting point, in Africa – this is why we have a special relationship with Rwanda,” Angermayer told The New Times during an exclusive at Kigali Serena Hotel.
Angermayer said he was first attracted to Rwanda, and Africa, by President Paul Kagame who he first met in 2007, in Germany.
He said Rwanda was one of the few African countries preferred by investors because of the business reforms that have been undertaken.
“We prefer the good ones (Africa countries), and good ones means the ones with a good leadership like we see in Rwanda,” Angermayer said.
“When I first talked to the President in Germany, I already knew that I was interested but what made me more convinced is when I came here and saw what was happening.”
“This is why I have come with these investors---to see what is happening and take a decision.”
Angermayer, the brain behind a Germany-based company – the African Development Corporation (ADC) is also a member of President Kagame’s Presidential Advisory Council (PAC).
In February 2008, Angermayer brought in a group of 35 potential investors on a similar fact finding mission.
The young Germany entrepreneur said that many potential investors in the developed world lacked proper knowledge on investment opportunities in Africa, a reason he initiated these fact finding missions.
“They (investors) hear what you are saying but they don’t believe it because if you have not been to Africa, as a European or as an American, you have a totally wrong picture.”
He said the same applied to journalists who occasionally report on Africa but with hardly basic facts on what is happening on the ground.
“Our goal is to invest in Africa in the next say two years, around 200 million Euros and we need proper projects – the bottleneck is to find good projects but we are searching and, the more we find, the more we can invest.”
The German investor said his ADC group is specifically looking to invest in the financial sector but noted that others will spread into infrastructure, IT and other sectors.