President Kagame speaks at the WSJ investing in Africa Conference
London, 7 March 2017
President Kagame today spoke at the inaugural Wall Street Journal Conference on Investing in Africa, organized to discuss technology, transition and growth, at the News Building in London Bridge, where leading investors, executives and government officials convened to discuss how technology is driving change and investment in Africa, and to examine the economic and political landscape in-depth.
Answering a question concerning what Africa expected from President Trump’s administration, President Kagame since it seemed that Americans were still figuring out their President, it would take Africans much longer to figure out what to expect from the new administration in the US.
“Even before this, there has never been a clear US- Africa policy. Our interest as Africa is not to have people to do things for Africa but with Africa. It would be too early to judge President Trump’s administration now but probably something good might come out for us because it Is not babysitting we want. Maybe African might be pushed to learn a few lessons and do what they should have started long ago, which is to start working towards self reliance.”
President Kagame observed that people should realise that working together actually leads to people fulfilling their interests, as opposed to one entity assuming they are doing the other a favour.
On Rwanda’s secret to rapid growth, President Kagame said the said the keyword was putting the people of Rwanda at the centre of everything, implementing policies to fit their needs and desires.
President Kagame also fielded questions from the gathered audience which touched on regional integration, regional security and investment in the youth.
The daylong conference featured one-on-one interviews, panel discussions and themed lunch table discussions, all hosted by the Journal’s editors, who drew on their knowledge of influential leaders to explore key challenges and opportunities in Africa.
Other participants featured included Patrick Njoroge, Governor, Central Bank of Kenya, Akinwumi Adesina, President, African Development Bank, Mo Ibrahim, Chairman, Mo Ibrahim Foundation. Othere included Uche Orji, Managing Director and CEO, Nigeria Sovereign Investment Authority, Bob Collymore, CEO, Safaricom, Jay Ireland, President and CEO, GE Africa and Alon Lits, General Manager, Uber Sub-Saharan Africa.
The conference was hosted by The Wall Street Journal’s Editor-In-Chief Gerard Baker, and EMEA Editor Thorold Barker.