Rwanda, Saudi Fund sign $13m loan agreement
A Saudi Arabian financial institution has signed an agreement worth $13 million with the government of Rwanda towards the ongoing construction of a multi-national road.
The loan agreement will also co-finance lot 6, Rubengera-Gasiza of Kivu Belt multinational road in the Western Province.
The Minister of Finance John Rwangombwa, together with Eng. Yousef Ibn Ibrahim Al-Bassam, managing Director of the Saudi Fund for Development (SFD) signed the agreement on Friday.
The event was held on the sidelines of the World Bank/IMF Annual Meetings taking place in the Asian economic giant.
“The deal is a pledge that SFD made during the fundraising roundtable for the road during the 9th Government of Rwanda and Development Partners Meeting held in November 2010 in Kigali,” reads part the statement from the Ministry of Finance and Economic planning.
During DPM meeting this year, the fund’s board of directors approved the loan to Rwanda of Saudi Riyals 48.750.000 ($13 Million) under concessional terms.
Speaking at the event, Rwangombwa, expressed gratitude regarding the development partnership between Rwanda and the Saudi Fund.
The other financiers of road include the government of Rwanda, Kuwait Fund, and Arab Economic Development among others.
The African Development Bank and Government of Rwanda have also financed Lot 7, Gasiza-Rubavu ($68m) of 47.8 Km.
The total length of the multinational (Burundi-Rwanda) infrastructure is 265.7km, with 185 kilometres on Rwandan side (Kivu-Belt Road) estimated to cost $ 350 million.
“With the Saudi Fund financing, the mobilization of the funding is concluded. When completed, the multinational road will among other benefits, promote regional integration and contribute to trade,” says the statement.
The road is also expected to boost trade and reduce transport costs in the Western Province, as well as the rest of the country.
The Western province produces 70% of the nation’s coffee and 40% of the nation’s tea produce.
By Frank Kanyesigye, The New Times
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