The Government and the European Union yesterday signed two financing agreements, worth €8 million (approximately Rwf6.3 billion).
The grant will be equally divided between land tenure regularisation programme and technical cooperation.
Under the land tenure regularisation, smallholder farmers will be supported as part of efforts to build resilience against climate change. This will be done through improved land administration and land use monitoring at the central and local government levels.
The technical cooperation component covers trainings, conferences and seminars which are expected to help build the necessary capacity for the implementation of the 11th European Development Fund (EDF) national Indicative programmes for Rwanda (2014-2020).
Claver Gatete, the Minister for Finance and Economic Planning, said that the Land Tenure Regularisation grant will reduce rural population vulnerability to climate change effects and improve environment for sustainable investments through increased capacities in land administration, use, planning and monitoring.
“The EU has earmarked Euros 200 million for energy, 200 million for agriculture, 40 million for accountable governance and 10 million for civil society and other support programmes. All this is geared towards economic transformation and rural development,” Gatete said during the signing ceremony in Kigali.
Michael Ryan, The Head of the EU Delegation to Rwanda, said the €4 million grant to the Ministry of Natural Resources is in recognition of the impressive progress the country has made in land registration.
“We are convinced of the importance of making land administration financially sustainable and accessible to all Rwandans. It means that all land transactions will be recorded. This is a powerful incentive for land owners to invest in developing their land. It will have positive spin-offs for the economy,” Ryan noted.
EU also gave Rwanda a €460 million grant under the 11th European Development Fund.
Vincent Biruta, the Minister for Natural Resources, said this financial support will help in achieving the sustainability and increasing the capacity of land management systems.
“We will also use the money towards decentralising systems governing land tenure regulations at sector level and enhancing our capacity in land use planning and mapping,” Biruta said.