12 June 2017

Africa: Alibaba's Jack Ma Expected in Rwanda for Africa's Biggest Youth Tech Summit

Photo: New Times
Jack Ma.

Kigali — Chinese Billionaire Jack Ma, one of the world's leading entrepreneurs, founder and executive chairman of Alibaba Group is expected to attend the inaugural of YouthConnekt Africa Summit, next month, in the Rwandan Capital, Kigali, Rwandan ministry of youth and ICT said on Sunday.

Rwanda hosts the meeting from July 19 to 21 that will primarily focus on youth entrepreneurship and to explore and exploit opportunities on the continent.

"Jack Ma is scheduled to come to Rwanda and share entrepreneurial skills with our young people. We are in contacts with the Alibaba Group, and we expect him next month in Kigali for YouthConnekt Africa Summit," Jean Philbert Nsengimana, Rwandan minister of youth and ICT said.

He added the Chinese business magnate is among key guest speakers at the event, including Rwandan President Paul Kagame, Mukhisa Kituyi, secretary general of United Nations Conference on Trade and Development (UNCTAD) and Abdoulaye Mar Diye, United Nations Development Program (UNDP) assistant administrator and director of the Regional Bureau for Africa.

The summit is expected to attract more than 1,500 participants including top executives from multinational companies that operate in Africa, leaders of civil society organizations, Africa's development partners, members of the academia and most importantly successful entrepreneurs, artists and youth opinion leaders from across the continent, according to organizers.

The three-day meeting dubbed "realizing Africa's youth potential" will bring together government officials, entrepreneurs, investors, multinationals, and startups shaping the African technological ecosystem to interact and discuss on the methods of using technology to drive Africa's economic growth.

It is organized by the government of Rwanda, UNCTAD and UNDP to empower young people across the continent with skills development and entrepreneurship.

The meeting will also highlight Africa's vibrant technology scene as well as comparing and learning from other technologies across the world.

YouthConnekt Africa is a result of a highly successful initiative launched in 2012 by the government of Rwanda and UNDP.

The YouthConnekt initiative is a multi-faceted program that engages youth in national dialogue, and works with them to find or create their own employment and entrepreneurship opportunities.


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