May 27, 2021: The Government of Rwanda and French Agency for Development (AFD) today signed a financing agreement worth Euro 60 million (Approximately 71.8 Billion). The budgetary support financing will support Rwanda’s COVID-19 health response plan through vaccine purchase and distribution as well as Social Protection Response Plan.
The financing agreement was signed by Dr. Uzziel Ndagijimana, the Minister of Finance and Economic Planning, on behalf of Government of Rwanda and Chief Executive Officer Mr. Rémy Rioux, on behalf of AFD.
This financing will make it possible in particular to support the health system priority measures of increasing detection and diagnostic capacities, enhancing the case management capacity, and ensuring continuity of patient cares especially for pregnant women.
The financial support will also help to strengthen social protection response plan which is structured to support three core areas that include strengthening and extending existing Vision Umurenge Program delivery system; setting up a direct support system for the informal sector; and establishment of complementary support measures to preserve the access of the poorest to education and basic health care.
In his remarks after the agreement signing, Minister Ndagijimana said “This support comes at a critical moment as Rwanda looks forward to reopening its economy and return to pre COVID-19 pandemic normalcy. It will augment our COVID-19 vaccine purchase efforts, reinforce our health and social protection systems thereby ensuring proper handling of COVID-19 pandemic and beyond but also protecting vulnerable people”.
Mr. Rémy Rioux, the AFD’s Chief Executive Officer said “While Covid-19-related mortality was brought under control in the country by strong and exemplary measures of containment, the social and economic consequences, particularly for precarious workers in the informal sector, need to be addressed. AFD, via its Health in Common initiative, is therefore keen to support Rwanda in its social protection measures to limit the effects of the crisis on the most vulnerable populations.”
AFD has since the beginning of COVID-19 pandemic strengthened its bilateral cooperation with Rwanda. So far AFD has provided a budget support worth Euro 40 million and project support worth Euro 80 million for energy access as well as Euro 5.8 million for technical and vocational education. Currently both countries are exploring several areas of cooperation that may include Energy, digital transformation, Education, health, private sector development among others.