PM Modi’s visit to Rwanda boosts India’s role in Africa

Prime Minister Narendra Modi paid a state visit to Rwanda from July 23-24 2018, at the invitation of the Rwandan President, Paul Kagame - the fifth high level interaction between India and Rwanda in around 18 months

July 25, 2018

Eight preliminary agreements were signed during the visit, covering areas of trade, defence, dairy-cooperation, agriculture, culture, leather and allied sector

India also signed line of credit worth US$200 million for special economic zone and irrigation; Rwanda has received Indian lines of credit of nearly US$400 million

PM Modi’s visit brought aid to Rwanda to boost capacity in education, skill development, renewable energy, healthcare, tourism, science and technology

PMT Modi addressed a business event organised by the Federation of Indian Chambers of Commerce (FICCI) and the Rwanda Development Board (RDB)

Prime Minister Narendra Modi paid a state visit to Rwanda from July 23-24 2018, at the invitation of the Rwandan President, Paul Kagame. This was the first ever visit by an Indian Prime Minister to Rwanda. This was also the fifth high level interaction between India and Rwanda in one and half years including two visits by President of Rwanda to India, visit by the Vice President of India to Rwanda and recent visit by the President of Senate of Rwanda to India. On the trip, PM Modi was accompanied by a high-level delegation of senior government officials as well as a large business leaders. He held one-on-one talks with Paul Kagame and chaired the bilateral delegation level talks. Eight preliminary agreements were signed during the visit, covering areas of trade, defence, dairy-cooperation, agriculture, culture, leather and allied sector as well as line of credit of US$200 million for special economic zone and irrigation.

Over the past few years, Rwanda has effectively employed US$400 million worth lines of credit from India. Beyond financial aid, PM Modi’s visit brought aid in kind to Rwanda that were aimed at boosting capacity in education, skill development, renewable energy, healthcare, tourism, agriculture and animal resources, defence, science and technology. As a measure to support President Kagame’s ‘Girinka programme’, a social protection scheme of ‘one cow-one family’ to uplift the national economy, PM Modi gifted two hundred cows. He also addressed a business event jointly organised by the Federation of Indian Chambers of Commerce (FICCI) and the Rwanda Development Board (RDB). Meanwhile, Indian companies have invested more than US$54 billion in Africa so far, and the nation’s trade with the continent is now worth over US$62 billion. This is over 21 per cent more than in the previous year.

Rwanda had become the first of the 18 new resident Indian Missions to be opened in Africa in 2018, underlining the importance attached by India to its relations with Rwanda. Rwanda has benefitted from projects implemented under the Indian lines of credit through EXIM Bank of nearly US$400 million (Hydropower, Agriculture, Skill Development, Infrastructure), several grant projects (VTC, Solar Electrification) and from training and scholarship programs (ITEC, ICCR, IAFS). India’s development partnership in Africa currently includes around 180 lines of credit worth about US$11 billion in over 40 countries. During this stay, PM Modi interacted with the Indian Community in Rwanda, during which he invited the Indian Diaspora to visit India for the Pravasi Bhartiya Divas to be held in January 2019. Indian community of neighbouring states had also travelled for this interaction with the Prime Minister.