The New Times (Kigali)

Rwanda: RDB Woos Global Young Business Leaders

Rwanda Development Board (RDB) has urged members of the Young Presidents' Organisation (YPO) to invest in Rwanda.

YPO is a global network that connects 20,000 chief executives of leading companies generating $6 trillion and employing more than 15 million people in 120 countries.

The call by RDB was made during a business dinner in Kigali organised by institution for a delegation of YPO on Thursday evening.

The 17- member YPO delegation led by Denis Overton, Managing Director of Aquascot, a Scotland-based sea food company, is in Rwanda to learn more about the country's vision and progress as well as to follow up on projects set up during their previous visits.

"The event focused on explaining to the YPO investors, first hand information about business opportunities in Rwanda," said Vivian Kayitesi, head of Investment Promotion and Implementation at RDB.

She added that it was an opportunity for the young potential investors and Rwanda business leaders to interact and share business ideas.

The occasion that was graced by the ministers of Youth and ICT and the Trade and Industry saw YPO - Rwanda Action Forum (RAF) launch a new group "Doing Business in Rwanda Network" that will focus on attracting foreign direct investment into the country.

"The YPO members come from diverse business backgrounds; we definitely expect some of the potential business leaders to invest in our country," Kayitesi noted.

The Rwanda Action Forum with 30 members currently focuses on priority areas like agriculture, ICT, education among others, where some of the projects deal in essential oils and silo storage.

Paul Lamontagne, a member of the delegation, told The New Times that the group wants to know how business is carried out in Rwanda and the country's global ranking when it comes to doing business.

"We have launched the Rwanda business network, a platform that will enable our members explore and understand the investment climate here in Rwanda. Being well informed how business is done here will help other YPO global members to explore opportunities in this country with ease," he explained.

Speaking at the event, Francois Kanimba, the Minister of Trade and Industry, said the country was still virgin and ready for investments.

"We hope the Rwanda business network you formed will bring in more investments into our country," he told YPO team.

YPO activities started in Rwanda in 2008 when the first group of 12 members from the global organisation visited the country as part of an economic development network's exploratory mission to Africa.

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