Rwanda Targets $1.5 Billion in Foreign Investments This Year

Foreign direct investment in Rwanda will probably rise 36 percent this year to $1.5 billion, according to the East African nation’s development board.

Projects financed by foreigners will rise from $1.1 billion last year, Francis Gatare, chief executive officer of Rwanda Development Board, said in an interview on Thursday.

“In 2015 we witnessed an increment in the number of investments registered, with key projects in energy and education topping the list,” Gatare said.

Economic growth will probably slow in Rwanda this year and Standard & Poor’s has lowered the country’s credit rating outlook to negative because of the effect of slumping commodity prices on growth. Still, a rebound in China’s economy, Rwanda’s second-largest trading partner, would help attract investment to the nation, Gatare said.

Rwanda’s economy will expand 6.8 percent this year, below 2015’s 7.1 percent, according to the World Bank.

Projects that received investment in 2015 were the University of Global Health Equity, which attracted $150 million, an off-grid solar power project valued at $113.5 million and $100 million for an Africa leadership university that targets education services in Rwanda and the continent.

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