7 February 2013

Rwanda: Dutch Foreign Minister Lauds Bilateral Relations Between Rwanda and Netherlands

The Dutch Minister for Foreign Trade and Development has commended the bilateral relations between Rwanda and Netherlands. Lilianne Ploumen made the remarks at the end of her two day visit to Rwanda.

Minister Ploumen met with various government officials, representatives of the European Union, the United States government, the World Bank, the African Development Bank, and the International Monetary Fund. She also visited the Kigali Genocide Memorial Centre.

Speaking on the Netherland's decision to suspend aid to Rwanda, and whether her meetings with government officials would trigger its reinstatement, Minister Ploumen said:

"My visit aims at having perspectives from different aspects of government, NGOs, civil society and countries in the region and when I go back I will take time to reflect because I think the relationship between Rwanda and the Netherlands is an important one, but also I will have discussions with my colleagues from the European Union".

The end of Minister Ploumen's visit to Rwanda was marked by the signing of an aviation pact with Rwanda's Minister of Infrastructure, Albert Nsengiyumva. This treaty enables Rwandair to use the Amsterdam airport for flights in Europe. Likewise, Holland will use Kigali's airport to connect with the Great Lakes region.

Minister Albert Nsengiyumva said that the signing of this treaty is very important to Rwanda because they will be partnering with a country that has been in the aviation business for more than a century.

"First of all this is a sign of trust they have in us, having seen how our aviation sector is progressing but above all this will open up more opportunities for cooperation especially in technical assistance" he said.

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