Financial management skills and access to finance could be boosted following the launch of Rwanda Institute of Cooperatives, Entrepreneurship and Microfinance (RICEM).
The institute, launched yesterday, is located at the former Centre Iwacu Kabusunzu in Nyamirambo, Nyarugenge District, and is expected to address entrepreneurial challenges and skills the the country’s private sector is grappling with.
It will also help close the gap between the vocational technical trainings and high commercial education provided by universities, the Minister for Trade and Industry, Francois Kanimba, said.
“The institute will offer practical training and education in the areas of entrepreneurship, management of micro, small and medium sized enterprises and related topics such as technical knowledge of specific occupations or industries, personnel management, governance and accountancy among others, thereby providing a conducive platform for the private sector to grow and thrive,” Kanimba said.
We want to channel all capacity building programmes and budgets through RICEM, thus help all microfinance employees to acquire need skills, Kanimba added.
Running the project
The project will be jointly managed by Ministry of Trade and Industry, Ministry of Finance and Economic Planning, National Bank of Rwanda, Rwanda Cooperative Agency, Workforce Development Authority and Private Sector Federation.
The project is also supported by the Germany cooperation, seeks to create a vocational training centre of excellence for entrepreneurship cooperatives and microfinance across the country, Annoncee Kuradusenge, the chairperson of RICEM steering committee, said.
“The institution aims at becoming a national reference point for innovation and consultancy services in areas of business management and will help foster Rwandan human capital to become a competitive dynamic workforce, globally,” Kuradusenge said.
“An incubation centre will be established to orient the youth with entrepreneurial skills which are required by the market.”
RICEM seeks to provide practice-oriented vocational trainings for board members, managers and staff of SMEs, non-financial cooperatives, micro finance institutions and Saccos, she added.
Short courses with duration of about one week will also be offered, as well as comprehensive, modular professional trainings.
The institute seeks to promote and provide quality lifelong learning opportunities, through a continuous education and training road map, yet flexible to meet the diverse strata of local human capital.
Strengthen cooperatives, entrepreneurs and microfinance institutions through education, training and business advisory services at different levels appropriate for the target groups is mandate the institute must carry on.
Peter Rwema, the director of programs at the Association of Microfinance Institutions in Rwanda, told The New Times that the institute will help make microfinance more dynamic and productive, thus promoting efficiency and financial discipline.