Rwanda, Singapore boost ties in aviation, investment

Rwanda, Singapore boost ties in aviation, investment

Prime Minister Edouard Ngirente and Singaporean Deputy Prime Minister, Tharman Shanmugaratnam on Thursday witnessed the signing of bilateral agreements in aviation and investment promotion.

The signing ceremony took place in the Prime Minister’s office in Kigali.

The aviation agreement was signed by Jean de Dieu Uwihanganye, the Rwandan Minister of State for Transport and Koh Poh Koon, Singapore’s Senior Minister of State for Trade and industry.

Trade Minister Vincent Munyeshyaka signed with his Singaporean counterpart an agreement on the promotion and protection of investments.

Shanmugaratnam, who is also the Coordinating Minister for Economic and Social Policies, arrived in the country for a working visit on Wednesday.

“We covered many areas including public service management which is something that Singapore has been developing for many years. We covered the aviation sector, financial market development and the whole issue of long-term management of land use.” Shanmugaratnam said.

“I must say that personally I was very impressed by the clarity of the questions and the thinking of the part of my Rwanda counterparts and certainly several of these areas we feel that there is still a lot of scope for collaboration and sharing of our experience”.

Shanmugaratnam pointed out that Rwanda and Singapore have been working together in various areas and going forward there are specific areas the partnership will be extended, singling out public service management.

Infrastructure Minister Claver Gatete said the agreements will help Rwandans to do business with Singapore and pave way for RwandAir to fly to Singapore, with the national airline of the Asian country flying to Kigali.

“One of the aspects we will cooperate with Singapore is the aviation sector. We look up to them to share their experience as they have been in the field for very many years. We also looked at changes that can be made in public service to become more productive and the social security aspect,” Gatete told The New Times, adding that Rwanda also  has a lot to learn from Singapore’s waste water management system.

Rwanda’s exports to Singapore are valued at 31 million USD while Singapore exports to Rwanda are estimated at 5 million USD.

“We want this to grow,” Munyeshyaka said adding that in the recent past, Singaporeans have invested around 145 million USD in Rwanda.