Construction of the Kigali Convention Centre Complex is quickly progressing now that the Chinese group that was contracted to build the Rwf128 billion project is laying the foundation.
According to Leopold Mukama, the Managing Director of Ultimate Concepts – the company responsible for the multi-million dollar project, the contractor has also put in place state-of-the-art equipment, including a laboratory that tests the quality of construction materials.
“The laboratory is the best in the country, and hopefully, it will boost the Rwandan construction business.
This is because we can now make all kinds of tests without necessary taking them out of the country as before.
“Mobilization of equipment has really been impressive, and I believe that it is imperative for our local engineering students to visit the site often, so that in future, they can transfer this knowledge to upcoming projects like the Bugesera airport.
“To ensure that the works are complete within the planned 32 months, or even earlier, vacilities that can host about 300 employees has been set up at the site. Should the need arise to work in shifts for 24 hours, then this will be absolutely possible,” Mukama said.
As regards provision of employment to the Rwandan community, the official cited future demand for more local labour on the site explaining that, “the current job of laying the foundation for such a huge structure is very technical and only experts are needed at the moment.
“Once that is done, more Rwandans will be required in the construction process. As of now, we have 150 Chinese on site and 60 Rwandans. We however put in place a skills transfer system by ensuring that for every on-going construction process conducted by the experts, Rwandans be involved,” he added.
The project has also started to attract investors.
Officials are optimistic that soon there will be more investment in the structure now that the project is becoming a reality.
Major components of the centre include a five star hotel with 292 rooms, a conference centre with a capacity of 2,500 and office space.
The Beijing Construction Engineering Group (BCEG), which is among the top 10 in China, is the company responsible for the Complex’s construction.
According to Mukama, the total construction cost is $226 million (Rwf128 billion). US$197 million (Rwf111.9 billion) was signed to BCEG and the remaining $29 million (Rwf16.5 billion) will be used to furnish the hotel and purchase other materials for finishing touches.