Prime Minister Narendra Modi on Monday announced that India will extend two lines of credit to Rwanda – one each of $100 million (approximately Rs 689 crore) for the development of industrial parks, a special economic zone and agriculture. Modi is the first Indian prime minister to visit the East African country.
Modi and Rwanda President Paul Kagame discussed steps to boost the bilateral ties by strengthening cooperation in defence, trade and agriculture sector, PTI reported. The two countries signed memorandums of understanding for collaboration in leather and allied sectors, dairy cooperation, agricultural research and education.
Modi also announced that India will soon open its mission in Rwanda. “We are going to open a High Commission in Rwanda,” said the prime minister. “This will not only establish communication between our respective governments but also enable facilities for consular, passport and visa.”
Modi said India and Rwanda have stood the test of time. “It is a matter of honour for us that India has stood with Rwanda in their economic development journey,” he added. Kagame, on the other hand, said Modi’s visit represents a milestone in the long-standing friendship and cooperation between the two countries.
Modi called the Indian diaspora the country’s rashtradoots, or ambassadors. “President Kagame said to me that the Indian community is contributing to Rwanda’s progress and they are also doing lot of community service,” said Modi as he addressed the Indian community in Rwanda on Monday evening. “I was happy to hear this. All over the world, the Indian diaspora is making a mark. They are our rashtradoots.”
The Indian prime minister will be in Rwanda for two days. While on Monday Modi and Kagame held a one-on-one meeting and participated in delegation-level talks, the prime minister is scheduled to visit the Genocide Memorial on Tuesday. He is also expected to participate in an event on “Girinka” (one cow per family), a national social protection scheme.