Hamid Ansari launches India-Rwanda Innovation Growth Program

Vice President of India, Hamid Ansari launches the India-Rwanda Innovation Growth Program as one of the major Science and Technology initiatives between India and Rwanda. The Program was launched in presence of the Prime Minister of Rwanda, Anastase Murekezi, and is a key announcement made during the high-level visit of the Indian Vice President.

India-Rwanda Innovation Growth Program is a first of its kind initiative to be launched and piloted between India and Rwanda to strengthen the bilateral relationship purely based on Science, Technology, and Innovation. The objective of the Program is to match the socio-economic needs of Rwanda by linking the Rwandan industry with leading edge Indian technologies and innovations.

The Program will deploy 20 demonstrated and validated Indian technologies and innovations over a period of two years. The joint programs/ventures created with Rwandan partners will deliver at least 20 sustainable social enterprises that will stimulate economic impact development in Rwanda.

As a prelude to the Program, fifteen Indian techno-entrepreneurs also showcased their innovative solutions at the prestigious Kigali Convention Centre, Kigali. The Showcase and Business to Business interaction were inaugurated by the Vice President of India and the Prime Minister of Rwanda. More than 100 interested private and public sector attendees from Rwanda attended and interacted with Indian innovators and business delegates.

The showcased Indian Innovations included CassavaTech, a patented technology that brings down capital cost of processing Cassava from USD 15,000 to USD 200 and reduces operating cost from USD 20 to USD 2 for 200 kg processing capacity. The technology further reduces drying time for Cassava from 10 days to 10 hours producing high-quality Cassava flour. Another technology showcased was a ~100% compostable menstrual hygiene solution providing affordable pads to adolescent girls and women. This is done using a unique low cost, low electricity consuming machine that produces 1200-2400pads/8-10 hrs through community participation from 12-16 women (no specific skills required) as production workforce.

The India-Rwanda Innovation Growth Program is a joint initiative of the Department of Science and Technology and the Federation of Indian Chambers of Commerce and Industry supported by the Ministry of External Affairs, Government of India.

Shri Hamid Ansari, Vice President of India stated “I am happy to learn of the initiative jointly taken by the Federation of Indian Chambers of Commerce and Industry (FICCI) and the Ministry of Science and Technology for organizing the India-Rwanda Innovation Growth Program and a Technology & Innovation Showcase at Kigali. Science and Technology are powerful drivers of growth and development all over the world. The solution of our myriad problems lies in a deeper understanding of science and more judicious use of technology. I am sure the joint programs/ventures foreseen with Rwandan partners will play an important role in fostering sustainable development and progress in both the countries.”

Dr. Harsh Vardhan, Minister of Science and Technology stated “Indio-Rwanda joint initiative in the field of Science and Technology and its commercial exploration is indeed a welcome step and goes a long way in further cementing Indio-Africa relationship. Visit of Prime Minister Shri Narendra Modi to Africa and India hosting 40 head of states/government during indo-Africa Forum Summit III speaks of our mutual desire for engagement in diversified fields for benefit of people of two regions. I wish this initiative will go a long way in establishing everlasting mutually beneficial partnership leading to the inclusive growth of people of two regions.”

Prof. Ashutosh Sharma, Secretary, Department of Science & Technology shared “We are proud to carry forward the vision and announcement of our Hon’ble Prime Minister, Shri Narendra Modi, to share our validated technologies and innovations with Rwanda soon to start India-Rwanda Innovation Growth Program. This Program has been conceived to bridge Rwanda’s assessed needs for impact development by bringing together Rwandan entrepreneurs and public sector with Indian innovators. India is proud to partner with Rwanda in this first pilot to establish a technology transfer and enterprise creation which can then be replicated in East African nations and across the African continent”.

On the launch of the Program, Dr. A. Didar Singh, Secretary General, FICCI said “India and Africa share a common historical background and have been long-term partners in their journey of growth and development. FICCI has been working with the Department of Science and Technology over the last decade to identify, nurture and scale innovative solutions that address global development challenges. We now look forward to sharing and transferring such technological solutions to our friends in Africa and deeply engage with the entrepreneurial fraternity in Africa.”

Mr. Nirankar Saxena, Senior Director, FICCI who will also lead the Program from FICCI said “The FICCI Centre of Innovation, Science and Technology Commercialization aims to work with African entrepreneurs to strengthen bilateral cooperation in the field of Science, Technology, and Innovation. We are committed to working with Africa to create a global ecosystem where we collaborate to develop solutions most needed at the last mile.”

Source – BWI