World Bank president Dr. Jim Yong Kim on Wednesday said that Rwanda’s approach to encourage private sector investment was a sure way to build resilience and maintain growth.
During a public lecture held on the theme “Addressing today’s challenges for a prosperous future” Dr Kim discussed the bank’s shifting approach to development in order to have a greater impact and reduce levels of poverty. He noted that the bank plans to invest less in initiatives that can be done commercially by the private sector.
The approach also aims at de-risking countries as investments destinations to increase the interest by private sector investments, leaving the government to concentrate on initiatives that cannot be done commercially.
“The projects that are so easy to get into and have guaranteed returns should be done by the private sector. If it can be done commercially then all development partners should avoid financing it. We can ask governments not to take the easy route and not accept the loans for projects that can be funded by the private sector,” he said.
The Minister for Finance and Economic Planning, Claver Gatete, said that Dr. Kim’s visit to Rwanda opened up conversations about continued partnership.
“The next step in the partnership would see the World Bank Group also work with the private sector to increase their role in national development and investment in more sectors,” Minister Gatete said.
Towards global goals of ending poverty and having shared prosperity, Kim advocated for approaches such as investing more in human capital through improved education systems as well as building resilience to economic shocks that have often stalled the economic growth.
Kim added that countries should also have a sense of urgency in building human capital given the pace of automation of services which is expected to reduce the number of jobs available globally.
The President of World Bank was in the country on a two-day official visit during which he visited the drone port in Muhanga District, the ICT innovation Centre, kLab, and Digital Fabrication Lab, Kigali Special Economic Zone as well as a social protection site in Kinyana village, Gasabo district.