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FILM: Rwanda chooses environment and prosperity

“We are not making a choice between environment and prosperity. We are rather looking at how do we combine both because one supports the other.” These were the words of President Paul Kagame of Rwanda who spoke at the World Economic Forum (WEF) annual summit in Davos, Switzerland.

The panel, which included UN chief, Ban Ki-moon; Jim Yong Kim, the World Bank president; Paul Polman, chief executive of Unilever; Christine Lagarde, the International Monetary Fund (IMF) president; and Michael Spence William R. Berkley, a professor in Economics and Business, discussed “Tackling Climate, Development and Growth”.

President Kagame said there was a need to move beyond debate and focus on implementation. “If you are leaders in government or business, the issue of how you involve people is known. Failure comes in not doing it, not because we don’t know it but just because we don’t do it.” He added that cooperation at the national and international level, coupled with investment in relevant research and technology, are both essential to solving challenges of climate change.

The president referred to the success of Fonerwa, Rwanda’s national fund for environment and climate change.

Rwanda, he said, was using an inclusive approach, which focussed on equality. “We have to make sure we involve everybody,” he said, referring to the historical disadvantage women have had. “We had to correct that and make sure that women have their rightful place.”

“If Rwanda can do it, anyone can do it,” the President said.

Watch President Paul Kagame of Rwanda talk at the World Economic Forum:

The WEF annual meeting was attended by over 40 Heads of State and Government hundreds of business leaders and representatives of governments and organisations.

Learn more about Fonerwa

Photo: World Economic Forum

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