Prime Minister Dr. Edouard Ngirente has held talks with Alain Ebobissé, the CEO of Africa50, an infrastructure investment platform that contributes to Africa’s growth by developing and investing in bankable projects.
They agreed to accelerate the implementation of Kigali Innovation City (KIC) project.
KIC is a flagship, pan-African project whose final value could approach $2 billion. It will house international universities, technology companies, biotech firms, and commercial and retail real estate in an area of 70 hectares.
As a key component of the government’s Vision 2020 development program, KIC aims to attract technology companies from all over the world to Rwanda to create an innovation ecosystem and further a knowledge-based economy.
It is located in the Kigali Special Economic Zone in Gasabo District.
On Tuesday, Prime Minister, Dr. Ngirente hosted Ebobissé, and they discussed speeding up the implementation of the Kigali Innovation City, which will be done in partnership between the government of Rwanda Rwanda and Africa50.
Dr. Ngirente later tweeted: “I have had a productive meeting with Mr. Alain EBOBISSE, CEO of Africa50. We deeply discussed on how to speed up the implementation of the Kigali Innovation City Project, a joint development partnership between the Rwandan Government and Africa 50.”
Meanwhile in July Africa50 signed an agreement with the Republic of Rwanda to develop and finance a “Digital Innovation Precinct”, including commercial and retail complexes, as part of Kigali Innovation City (KIC).
The signing ceremony took place in Johannesburg, South Africa during the Africa Investment Forum.
Honorable Ngirente of Rwanda said that: “Kigali Innovation City will be an Africa-focused innovation hub and a holistic ecosystem of technology clusters.
This innovative effort is the first of its kind in the continent.
It will have Pan-African development impact both in terms of economic and human capital.
Considerable amount of work has been done in collaboration with Rwanda Development Board, Africa50 and other partners.
The full success of this project requires concerted efforts to mobilize more private investors.”
Under the terms of the agreement Africa50 was appointed co-sponsor and partner of the project.
It will apply its project development, financial structuring, and infrastructure development expertise, working alongside the Rwanda Development Board and other partners during the development phase.
It will also help select additional partners, including other development finance institutions and private sector lenders, for the construction.
KIC should create over 50,000 jobs and generate $150 million in ICT exports annually, as well as attracting over $300 million in foreign direct investment.
Over 2600 students are expected to graduate annually from its universities over 30 years, adding to Rwanda’s and Africa’s pool of tech-savvy entrepreneurs.