The first ever Tanzania-Rwanda Business Forum is ready to kick off on Friday in Kigali under the theme“Committed to Strengthening Bilateral Trade &Investment Opportunities”.
The forum is organised jointly with the Rwanda Private Sector Federation, the Tanzania Chamber of Commerce, Industry and Agriculture, the Tanzania Trade Development Authority and the Tanzania Truck Owners Association.The trade forum manager, Mr Hubert Kissasi relayed that over 100 companies from both states had confirmed their participation and that preparations were well on track.
The forum will facilitate business-to-business (B2B) discussions with focus on cost effective means of sourcing products, services and information about companies from the two countries. The discussions will aid in improving trade ties between the countries
The event offers participants with access to a highly targeted audience of fellow industry professionals and will assist members of the business community in Tanzania have directs access to their Rwandan counterparts
New products that will be launched at the forum will be linked with conferences, exhibition and networking events
The forum will also be graced by the presence of senior government officials from both countries further boosting ties.
Since the November inauguration of Tanzanian President John Magufuli, the two governments have made significant steps toward improving bilateral relations. Kagame attended the swearing-in ceremony in Dar es Salaam port, and Magufuli returned the favor by visiting Kigali last month to participate in the 22-year commemoration of the 1994 Rwandan genocide, in which members of the Hutu ethnic majority murdered scores of people from the Tutsi minority.
The forum seems to be a first of many after Rwanda diverted its original plans of developing its rail link from Kenya to Tanzania. The country’s port of Dar es Salaam is vital to Rwanda, handling a majority of Rwandan imports and exports. Ramping up its exports with Tanzania could help Rwanda cut down on its trade deficit
Tanzania is currently Rwanda’s third largest trading partner within the East African Community.