Rwanda has signed a loan agreement worth US$18million (approximately Rwf18Bn) with OPEC Fund for International Development (OFID) to upgrade the road from Nyacyonga to Mukoto between Gasabo and Rulindo districts.

The upgrade of the 36-km stretch is projected to benefit the population by creating an alternative access road from Kigali City to Northern Province.

At the signing event, Uzziel Ndagijimana, Minister of Finance and Economic Planning disclosed that the project is co-funded by Arab Bank for Economic Development in Africa (BADEA) which will input another US$18M in addition to a US$5M Rwandan contribution.

Uzziel Ndagijimana, Minister of Finance and Economic Planning, and Dr. Abdulhamid Alkhalifa, Director-General of OPEC Fund sign the agreement in Kigali on May 17, 2022. 

The concessional loan from OFID provides for 20 years of repayment including five years of the grace period and an interest rate of 1.75%

The organization works to stimulate economic growth and social progress in low and middle-income countries around the world and its cooperation with the Rwandan government dates back to 1977, across different infrastructural sectors such as energy, transport, water, and sanitation, as well as in the banking sector.

The minister thanked the organization for its support demonstrated especially in setting up the Economic Recovery Fund which has benefited more than 6000 Small and Medium Enterprises.

Dr. Abdulhamid Alkhalifa, Director-General of OPEC Fund, said: “We hope that the benefit for the people of Rwanda is maximized,” adding that this is how this project, well designed and financed by OPEC, will work towards that target.

“Going forward, we are also looking for further cooperation with the government in all sectors, especially, in energy transition,” he cited. The road is one of the few African projects worth $352 million that were selected for funding.

Apart from Rwanda, projects from the Dominican Republic, Ghana, Kenya, and Ivory Coast were among the beneficiaries of the US$352 million loan.

SOURCE: NewTimes

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