Remarks by Minister Vincent Biruta at Opening of the Rwanda Green Growth Week

Remarks by Minister Vincent Biruta at Opening of the Rwanda Green Growth Week and High Level Policy Dialogue on Rwanda’s Green Growth and Climate Resilience Strategy

Kigali Convention Centre | 4 December 2017

Good morning to you all!

It is my great honour to welcome you to the official start of our first ever Rwanda Green Growth Week. Today we begin five days of green growth related activities and I hope you will take time to join some of the many exciting events throughout the week.

The Green Growth Week is timely given the work we have recently undertaken to develop sector strategic plans and the National Strategy for Transformation. There is no doubt that we can only achieve these national development targets if green growth is at the heart of everything we do.

That is why today’s policy dialogue on the Green Growth and Climate Resilience Strategy is so important. It is the third such event we have held, and is an opportunity to take stock of what has been achieved since the strategy was launched in 2011. It is also a chance to examine the challenges we are facing, and commit to solving them together.

Distinguished guests, Ladies and gentlemen,

Through the Green Growth and Climate Resilience Strategy, we have a vision for Rwanda to be a developed, climate-resilient, low-carbon economy by 2050.. To achieve this, 14 Programmes of Action have been initiated and the responsibility for implementing these priority areas designated to relevant institutions. This is a good example of the kind of mainstreaming we need if we are to meet the targets set in the strategy.

I am pleased to note that focal points have been nominated for all implementing sectors of the strategy, and I encourage these representatives to enhance the quality of their reporting. The reporting tool developed by the coordination team will help to standardise and improve how we collect information, monitor and assessment progress, and evaluate results.

The coordination team has worked hard and engaged all implementing sectors on the main recommendations from last year’s high level dialogue. I would like to thank the team for their dedication as well as our partners, especially One UN Rwanda and the United Nations Development programme, for their support.

I am confident that the recommendation from recent consultations to provide assistance and capacity building to focal points will be acted upon. I look forward to the enhanced cooperation, implementation and improved reporting this will bring.

Distinguished guests, Ladies and gentlemen,

The Ministry of Environment has also been working to improve the way we mobilise resources to enable efficient coordination and maximum return on investment – all while accommodating the needs of different sectors. Through this work, we are mitigating our contribution to climate change and becoming more resilient in a warmer world.

And while the progress we have made to date is impressive, we should not be content. We need to harness our collective experience, skills, knowledge and wisdom to incorporate new national and global targets into the Green Growth and Climate Resilience Strategy. And we must ensure the strategy does not simply remain words on a page, but rather becomes a guide for our everyday work.

This, along with efforts made to improve integrated planning and monitoring systems, will allow the government to invest in the most impactful policy-level interventions.

Distinguished guests, Ladies and gentlemen,

As a government, we must provide an enabling environment for green growth, harness innovation to address climate change and improve the management of natural resources. This is vital to achieving National Strategy for Transformation, as well as the Green Growth and Climate Resilience Strategy.

Good progress is being made, and today’s dialogue will build on the momentum in place thanks to the already strong partnerships between all stakeholders in all sectors.

I encourage active participation in today’s discussions to ensure that we leave here with a greater commitment to achieving sustainable economic transformation based on the principles of green growth.

With these words, I am pleased to officially open the 2017 Rwanda Green Growth Week.

I wish you all fruitful discussions and thank you for your kind attention.