UK-Rwanda Business Forum: Unlocking growth and opportunities

Friday December 22 2023

The UK High Commissioner to Rwanda Omar Daair (L) and Rwanda Development Board's CEO Francis Gatare at the recent inauguration of the UK-Rwanda Business Forum. PHOTO | COURTESY


The United Kingdom and Rwanda have been strong partners for many years. We work together on many development initiatives in Rwanda to increase trade and investment between our two countries and to achieve shared goals on the global stage.

Over the last five years, trade between the UK and Rwanda has more than doubled, from $25 million in 2017 to $51 million in 2022. We are certain that there are huge opportunities to boost commercial ties further. To deliver this, we are pleased to be jointly hosting the inaugural UK-Rwanda Business Forum in January 2024 under the theme Succeeding in Rwanda: Unlocking Growth & Opportunities.

Why Rwanda?

Ranked the sixth fastest growing economy on the continent and at the heart of a large dynamic East Africa region, investing in Rwanda makes perfect business sense.

With the presence of a young and growing population, operating in multiple languages, Rwanda is ranked as the second easiest country to do business in Africa, with low corruption and high transparency. 

Kigali is increasingly a regional and continental hub. Rwanda’s global connections are better than ever, thanks to RwandAir – including six flights per week to London.


Kigali has a growing reputation as a venue for conferences and events, now ranked second in Africa for the meetings, incentives, conferences and exhibitions (Mice) sector.

With excellent mobile phone network coverage across the entire country and an ever-growing fiber optic network, the infrastructure here is business friendly.

UK-Rwanda Business Forum

Hosted by the British High Commission Kigali, working in close collaboration with the Rwanda Development Board (RDB), this event which is the first ever taking place at the Kigali Convention Centre from January 29-31, 2024, will bring together senior British and Rwandan policymakers and business leaders to boost trade and investment. Over 100 UK investors will tap into the favorable business climate and investment potential in Rwanda. 

The British delegation will be led by the UK Prime Minister’s Trade Envoy to Rwanda Lord Popat, together with His Majesty’s Trade Commissioner for Africa, John Humphrey. The event will also contribute towards our joint efforts ahead of the UK-Africa Investment Summit in London later in 2024.

The forum will provide unmatched opportunities for high-level dialogue, and networking for UK and Rwandan business leaders, investors, and senior government officials to discuss business opportunities available for each country and the Rwandan business climate, hence a broader overview of the most relevant opportunities for the UK investors, to help Rwanda achieve its Vision 2050 ambitions. 

With a focus on six priority sectors: manufacturing, agriculture, financial and professional services, the green economy, infrastructure, and critical minerals, which are priorities for the Government of Rwanda and in which the UK has expertise. These range from the green economy – as Rwanda aims to reduce carbon emissions by 38 percent by 2030 – to horticulture – which has grown at 16 percent p.a. recently. We will also focus on manufacturing, critical minerals, services, and infrastructure opportunities. 

There will be a combination of expert keynote addresses, lively panel discussions, business pitches, in-depth case studies, and networking. Those joining us for the event will get a taste of the fantastic coffee produced in Rwanda through a coffee cupping competition and be able to visit investor sites of interest, as well as thriving businesses. 

Our forum will also have inclusion at its heart. We will empower a diverse range of underrepresented groups, including showcasing wonderful female-led businesses, and ensuring the Forum is fully accessible to those with disabilities.  

Join us to see why Rwanda is the investment gateway to Africa!

We are proud of the strong economic links that already exist between our countries. Rwanda has built a reputation as a country for UK investment, and we hope that the forum will highlight new opportunities.  

In January, we are looking forward to hosting many visitors to Kigali and seeing local firms showcase their successes. We hope that this will help to deliver clean, green infrastructure deals and investments that will benefit all Rwandans.