President Paul Kagame has commended the cooperation between Rwanda and China, which led to the establishment of a $100m cement and building material manufacturing facility that will be producing over 1 million tonnes of cement annually.
The Head of State inaugurated the Anjia Prefabricated Construction Rwanda Company Ltd. -a cement and pre-fabricated construction product manufacturer, located in Muhanga District, Southern Province, describing it as a major step towards addressing the shortage of quality construction materials, not just for Rwanda, but the continent.
President Kagame commended China for being a long-term partner of Rwanda, and took time to thank the former Prime Minister of Ethiopia, Hailemariam Desalegn for introducing the company to Rwanda.
“Over the years, West China Cement and West Holding have become key players in Africa’s efforts to reach self-sufficiency in cement production,”
“I commend you for your commitment to infrastructure development in our continent. Earlier I had the opportunity to tour the Anjia factory, you have set the bar high in terms of quality and we appreciate that,” President Kagame said.
“This state-of-the-art factory will contribute to Rwanda’s transformation journey. We thank you and assure you that you have our country’s full support,” President Kagame said.
He pointed out that the growth prospects for Africa’s cement industry look very promising with the rapidly growing and urbanising population on the continent, which has created increased demand for housing and infrastructure.
President Kagame said that for manufacturers, the demand means new opportunities to invest in African countries, to the benefit of communities, through job creation and affordable products.
The Head of State, who said he was impressed by what he saw, pointed out that while challenges remain on the continent, they can be addressed through more cooperation and partnerships.
Focus on high quality, removing barriers
President Kagame commended the new market entrants for emphasizing quality and environmentally friendly manufacturing practices, which makes the investment more sustainable in the long run.
“To enhance the performance of the industry, it essential to deliver higher quality product and shift to more sustainable manufacturing practices,”
“Governments also have the responsibility to enact enabling investment policies. That is what we have been doing here in Rwanda for a number of years so far,” President Kagame said.
President Kagame said that to fully leverage the benefits of the African Continental Free Trade Area (AfCFTA), countries need to remove barriers that hamper cooperation, beneficial competition such as the one that led to the birth of the facility.
“Ultimately, the end goal is to build a more connected Africa, which everyone can benefit from. The AfCFTA is a valuable tool at our disposal but we must work together, all of us, to unleash its full potential,” President Kagame said.
The Head of State pointed out that while transformation takes time, Africans are united by a shared vision to close the infrastructure gap and improve standards of the people.
“Let’s continue building on this mindset and once again I would like to thank the People’s Republic of China, West China Cement and West International Holding for this significant contribution to Rwanda’s development and Africa as a whole,”
“Anjia is undoubtedly a good addition to Rwanda’s manufacturing landscape. I only see success in this our strong partnership,” President Kagame said.