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Rwanda: Private-Public Dialogue Opens

> 13 January 2014

The government, in partnership with the private sector, on Friday launched a platform where the private and public sectors will come together to improve the business environment.

The initiative dubbed Rwanda Private Public Dialogue (RPPD) will be facilitated by the Private Sector Federation (PSF) and Rwanda Development Board (RDB).

"It’s not the first time we are talking about RPPD; we have been talking about it. I remember six years ago, there were intensive discussions on how to mainstream public-private partnership dialogue in our decision making process," said the Minister of Trade and Industry, Francois Kanimba, during the inauguration.

"Rwanda Economic Social Council (RESC) was a very heavy platform where private and public sectors came jointly to design the development agenda for Rwanda and the structure was within the office of the Prime Minister, and a few years later, we realised that it wasn’t operational and the government decided to transfer everything to RDB," he added.

Kanimba stated that three years later, they are launching a new mechanism which he said, he has no doubt it will work depending on how people are determined to design something different from the previous one.

"We should organize our dialogue in a manner that will be beneficial to the public and the private entities and avoid coming back here after three years to launch the same mechanism," he advised.

The RPPD Secretariat, composed of RDB and PSF, is mandated to identify and prioritise issues and research before addressing them.

The structure brings together businesses, investors, individuals, cooperatives, associations and government entities to address the issues affecting their operations.

Claire Akamanzi, Acting Chief Executive Officer of RDB, said the platform will accelerate business reforms and build trust and understanding between parties.

"It’s a big moment for us because we are putting in place a new mechanism that will enable us to start talking to each other in order to maximize the benefits for both of us," she said.

"It brings an opportunity to actually follow up on those ideas and exchanges that you have had before.Otherwise, if it’s not well organised and coordinated, the opportunity to address the challenges meaningfully will be compromised," Akamanzi said.

According to Faustin Mbundu Kananura, the President of the PSF, the dialogue will expand the opportunities for the private sector to be part of Rwanda’s economic transformation journey.

"It is a strong advocacy tool in any highly functioning economy, and I am glad this structure puts the private sector in the driving seat," he said.