Rwanda joins Djibouti to develop ‘Djibouti land in Rwanda’
Tuesday, April 9, 2019
Rwanda joins Djibouti to develop ‘Djibouti land in Rwanda’

African Daily Voice

Rwandan officials would this week join their Djiboutian counterparts on the drawing table to develop a 10-hectare land in Rwanda that belongs to Djibouti, ADV learns here Tuesday.

The exercise will include developing several project proposals that would be examined and potentially endorsed by experts of the two countries with the view to fully develop the land, sources told ADV.

“Together, we are going to develop infrastructure, advance factory units on the 10 hectares. In the next few months or years, we should see something on the land,” Emmanuel Hategeka, RDB’s Chief Operating Officer told the press during the signing.

The meeting hopefully this week between the two sides, will follow a partnership agreement between the two sisterly nations which was signed two weeks ago in Kigali that paved the way for a joint venture to develop Djibouti’s land in Rwanda,

Unbelievable that Rwanda owns about 60 hectares of land in Djibouti which is 2,073 kilometers away!

In 2013, Djibouti offered Rwanda a 20-hectare piece of land at the port of Djibouti, and the latter was in reciprocity offered a plot of land in the Kigali Special Economic Zone.

Then in 2017, Djibouti Government allocated more hectares of land to Rwanda, expanding from the 20ha to the current 60ha near the Autonomous Port of Djibouti and the Dubai World International Port.

The unexploited land has potential to generate revenue to Rwanda and help the landlocked country gain access to international markets.

Aboubaker Omar Hadi, the Chairman of Djibouti Ports and Free Zones Authority indicated that this was part of the bigger plan for the two countries to work together.

“We want to take Rwanda to the ocean and we want Rwanda to take us to the heart of Africa,” the Chairman said, emphasising the importance of the partnership.

Hadi had told Rwanda’s New Times newspaper that the land is situated in the free trade zone along the port of Djibouti, making it strategic for investments like manufacturing and logistics.

The agreement was signed by leaders from Prime Economic Zones Ltd which manages the Kigali Special Economic Zone and Djibouti Ports and Free Zones Authority, and was witnessed by Rwanda Development Board (RDB).

Jeanne Isabelle Gasana, the Managing Director of Prime Economic Zones (PEZ) was quoted by The New Times newspaper that both the companies will each have 50 per cent stake in the new joint venture.

Djibouti has the largest industrial park in Africa, the Djibouti International Free Trade Zone, which covers 48.2 square kilometres of land and lies along the coastline.

It can be recalled that the economic zone was inaugurated last year in the presence of President Paul Kagame who at the time expressed support saying that the free trade zone would also benefit the region, including Rwanda.

Out of the 49 landlocked countries in the world, 16 are in Africa and ten in the horn of Africa.