Rwanda’s efforts to modernise the mining sector could be boosted following the forthcoming signing of a deal between the Ministry of Education and Egypt’s Cairo University to establish a mining and geological centre of excellence in the country.
Egyptian ambassador to Rwanda Khaled Abdel Rahman said under the agreement, the institution will train Rwandans in the mining and geological academia as well as help build institutional capacity of the country’s mining ministry.
“I am pleased to announce that soon Rwanda’s Ministry of Education and Cairo University will sign a memorandum of understanding that will see the establishment of a regional centre of excellence in mining and geology in Rwanda. We are confident that the centre will greatly strengthen the capacity of the mining ministry through skills development,” Rahman said while opening the 4th Annual Egypt and Middle East Expo at Amahoro Stadium in Kigali yesterday.
The exhibition has attracted over 60 companies from Egypt, India, China, United Arab Emirates, Malaysia and Pakistan.
Meanwhile, the envoy encouraged the Egyptian private sector to take advantage of the opportunities presented by Common Market for Eastern and Southern Africa (Comesa) and Rwanda’s conducive business environment to scale up investments in the country.
“Rwanda is potentially profitable for Egyptian products,” Rahman said.
Alex Ruzibukira, the director general in charge of industry and SME department at the Ministry of Trade and Industry, challenged the local private sector to export more products to Egypt. Rwanda mainly exports tea and coffee to the North African nation.
“Trade figures between the two countries show that Rwanda still imports a lot from Egypt compared to what we export to the country,” he said.
He urged businesses to foster trade relationships with Egyptian and Middle East investors, noting that this could help raise exports to the country.
Ruzibukira urged Egyptian investors to take advantage of recent business reforms and the big market in the region to increase investments in Rwanda, especially in agriculture and manufacturing sectors.
Meanwhile, Siadi Ehab, the managing director of Happy Leather, an Egyptian shoe company, said his firm would open a branch in Kigali, thanks to Rwanda’s position as one of the best business reformers in the region.
Reza Mohammed, an Iranian Jewellery dealer, said Rwanda could attract more foreign investments if it gave investors the ‘right’ kind of incentives.
The expo will last for 11 days.