What regional deals are in the bag from Kuwait?

Saturday November 23 2013

By KENNEDY ABWAO, Special Correspondent

EAST AFRICAN countries concluded key financial agreements at a meeting in Kuwait, to discuss new economic partnerships. Kuwait led other Arab nations in striking deals to boost Africa’s infrastructure.

East African leaders managed to strike deals to spur new investments in agriculture, infrastructure, energy and health sectors. The deals also focused on tourism sectors.

Rwanda signed a $12.24 million financing deal for the Munini Hospital Project, a 300-bed hospital that aims to improve the healthcare needs of the people of the Southern Province.

The funding meets 79 per cent of the project. It will cover equipment supply, construction and procurement. The project is due for completion in 2017.

While Kenya focused on building future diplomatic relations with the hosts, Kuwait, Rwanda and Tanzania struck financing deals to boost their health and agricultural sectors.

The biggest beneficiary of the Arab-African Summit was Somalia, which signed agreements worth $125 million to develop an airport complex, including a domestic terminal and a 2.2 km runway in Puntland.

Somali Finance Minister Fareh Ali Jamaa signed the $10 million airport agreement with Hamad Al-Omar, the Kuwait Fund for Arab Economic Development deputy director-general.

Under the deal, Kuwait would finance the construction of the Garowe Airport in Puntland State. The project aims to meet Somalia’s growing air passenger demand.

Tanzania signed loan agreements to boost its Kilimo Kwanza project, a green revolution project to promote irrigation and skilled farming.