Government of Rwanda and the Asian Infrastructure Development Bank (AIIB) today signed a concessional loan agreement worth US$ 100 million (approximately Frw 100 billion) to support Rwanda Digital Acceleration Project. The project is co-funded with World Bank for an equivalent amount of US$ 100 million making the total investment worth US$ 200 million.
The objective of this project is to support Rwanda’s short-run and long-term recovery from the pandemic and resilience to future pandemics by increasing access to broadband and selected digital public services, and strengthening the digital innovation ecosystem. The project has four main components namely Digital Access and Inclusion; Digital public service delivery; Digital Innovation and Entrepreneurship; and Project Management.
In his remarks, the Minister of Finance and Economic Planning, Dr. Uzziel Ndagijimana said: “The project will complement Government of Rwanda’s efforts in recovery and resilience to and post covid-19 pandemic and in implementing the National Strategy for Transformation, with a focus on the priority to establish Rwanda as a globally competitive knowledge-based economy”.
“This marks the first digital acceleration investment, the bank is making in sub-Saharan Africa. It is also the second project we are funding in region and both happen to be in Rwanda. We believe that these are first steps towards long term development relationship between Rwanda and the Bank,” AIIB’s Director General of the Banking Department, Mr. Najeeb Haider said.
The Minister of ICT and Innovation Paula Musoni said: “The additional financial support from AIIB into the Rwanda Digital Acceleration Project is an encouraging step towards realizing Rwanda’s vision to become a digital economy. While we are already cashing in on past investments in ICT and leveraging existing digital infrastructure, this financing agreement is a timely commitment that will allow us to further develop our broadband market and enhance Rwanda’s digital innovation ecosystem”.
Rwanda became a member of the Asian Infrastructure Investment Bank a year ago and has so far accessed financing worth US$ 200 to fund two key projects which include Finance for Recovery and Resilience (the Economic Recovery Fund and the just signed Rwanda Digital Acceleration Project, which are co-funded by World Bank.(End).