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The youth and ICT ministry and the Korea International Cooperation Agency (KOICA) in Rwanda have on Wednesday signed an MoU to enhance the ICT Innovation center. The center will be set up at the Integrated Polytechnic Regional Center (IPRC) Kigali Campus, in Kicukiro. KOICA’s contribution to the project will be US$ 5.6 million.

Rosemary Mbabazi, the permanent secretary in the ministry, said that the construction activities will begin next year and be completed in 30 months. “This is a key milestone that is taking us to the Vision 2020 in which Rwanda is determined to become a knowledge-based economy,” she said, adding that the center is going to facilitate the development of skills and capacity building.

The MoU covers the ICT development roadmap on ICT human resources education and venture incubation system development in Rwanda, constructing the building for the center and providing ICT equipment and materials required for the implementation of the project.

It will also focus on transferring know-how necessary for the operation of the center to local technicians through training programs and visiting Korean experts, as well as promoting job creation by promoting ICT start-ups.

“It fits in EDPRS-2 targets where are focusing on skills development,” Mbabazi said.

Sangchul Kim, resident representative of KOICA Rwand, said that the project is a part of KOICA efforts of strengthening ICT capacity in Rwanda. Apart from this project, Korea has supported the ICT departments at NUR and Kicukiro Vocational Center, and helping Rwanda Revenue Authority in developing e-tax and e-customers.

“This is the symbol of cooperation between Rwanda and Korea,” Sangchul Kim pointed out. “I believe that this will help job creation in ICT area, ICT human resource development and capacity building and in the end, contribute to vision 2020”

KOICA Rwanda has been established since 2011 and working in various sectors, including ICT, education and rural development. This year marks the 50th anniversary of establishment of diplomatic relationship between Korea and Rwanda.

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