Rwanda President Paul Kagame on Monday welcomed Prime Minister Narendra Modi of India for his first state visit to Rwanda.
“I sincerely appreciate that you were able to accept the invitation to visit us. I am personally happy we can forge this partnership,” Kagame told Modi.
“We are pleased with the efforts underway to strengthen cooperation between India and Rwanda. We look forward to welcoming the first Indian High Commissioner with residence in Kigali.”
Kagame said he was pleased that Modi brought a business delegation, saying it is a clear demonstration of India’s desire to boost trade and investment, between the two countries and the continent.
“As we work on implementing our “Made in Rwanda” initiative, we welcome further Indian investment, especially in manufacturing, where India has great experience and know-how.”
Kagame said Rwanda is already home to significant Indian investments in the medical sector and is keen to attract further investment, drawing on India’s renowned medical expertise.
He said the recent signing of the African Continental Free Trade Area provides a larger, more robust market to tap into.
“We hope that India will take full advantage of this more unified African market.”
India’s global leadership is also greatly valued in Africa, notably on technology, innovation, and international peacekeeping.
“Rwanda working with other African countries, we are looking forward to strengthening our collaboration in these and other areas.”
He added: “Prime Minister, I want to thank you for your generous contributions in many aspects of our development and for a particular gift which is under our Girinka Programme.”
Speaking at a press conference, Kagame said the two leaders had productive discussions on bilateral issues and other important regional and international matters.
He called the visit by an Indian Prime Minister represents a milestone in the long-standing friendship and cooperation between Rwanda and India.
“Our two countries share similar ambitions for the prosperity and well-being of our citizens. We appreciate India’s support to Rwanda’s development agenda. The agreements signed today will serve to further focus collaboration on priority areas.”
“I look forward to accompanying you to Bugesera District tomorrow as you deliver these gifts and see some of the work that Rwandans are doing to develop our country.”