18 November 2013

Rwanda: President Kagame in Kuwait to Attend the 3rd Africa-Arab Summit

President Paul Kagame is in Kuwait City to attend the Third Africa-Arab Heads of State Summit that will take place on the November 19th and 20th. The summit is expected to attract at least 34 Heads of State and vice presidents.

The Summit, the first to be held outside of Africa, is organized under the theme "Partners in Development and Investment," and will focus on the role of economic cooperation for sustainable development as well as discuss the activity report of the African Union Commission and the Secretary-General of the League of Arab States.

Kagame's participation is expected to build on the already existing good bilateral relations with the Arab world especially Kuwait- which has funded health and energy projects in Rwanda.

Rwanda has benefited from Kuwait support and last week the Kuwait Fund for Arab Economic Development signed a loan agreement worth $12million to contribute to the construction of a major hospital in Munini, Nyaruguru district, in the southern province of Rwanda.

The loan is the ninth provided to Rwanda after loans worth a total of $73 million, along with a technical assistance grant worth $340, 000.

Apparently, Ministers from African and Arab countries met in Kuwait City on November 17, in preparation for the meeting heads of state and government.

The Ministers reviewed the proposal for the mechanism of the Africa Arab partnership; to strengthen cooperation on migration and concerning the establishment of Africa Arab financing mechanisms among others.

Ties between Africa and the Arab region are strengthened by geography, history and culture. However, the formal partnership between the two sides was initiated in March 1977.

African Arab regions form 24 percent of world GDP and also 70 percent of Arabs are Africans and nine out of 22 members of the Arab League are also members of the African Union.

Deputy Prime Minister and Minister of Foreign Affairs of Kuwait, Sheikh Sabbah Khallid Al Hamad Al Sabbah said the historical and cultural linkages, and the fact that the relationship enhances the chances of the partnership to achieve goals of enhancing the livelihoods of both peoples. "We have enough natural resources to achieve results", he said.

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