EUR 27 million team Europe backing for Rwanda Biomedical Centre to strengthen pandemic resilience
26-10-2021 12:25:00 | by: Pascaline Icyizere | hits: 1681 | Tags:

Minister for Health Dr Daniel Ngamije, and Finance Minister Dr Uzziel Ndagijimana highlighted the national importance of EUR 27 million European Investment Bank and European Union support for redevelopment of the National Health Laboratory by the Rwanda Biomedical Centre and new investment under Rwanda’s COVID-19 National Response Plan.

The European Investment Bank (EIB) is the long-term lending institution of the European Union owned by its Member States. It makes long-term finance available for sound investment in order to contribute towards EU policy goals.

“Unlocking new investment by the Rwanda Biomedical Centre will transform diagnosis, surveillance and research at the National Health Laboratory. The EUR 27 million Team Europe support provided by the European Investment Bank’s streamlined African COVID-19 health resilience engagement and the European Union will better protect Rwandans from disease and future epidemics.” said Dr Daniel Ngamije Minister for Health.

“Accelerating public health investment is essential to tackle COVID-19 and better prepare for future health emergencies. The European Investment Bank is a key financing partner for Rwanda and today’s EUR 27 million backing represents the first ever direct EIB backing for health investment in our country.” said Dr Uzziel Ndagijimana, Minister of Finance and Economic Planning.

The Team Europe financing was formally announced in Kigali earlier today ahead of the Second African Union-European Union ministerial meeting.

“Since the start of the COVID-19 pandemic the European Investment Bank has worked with partners across Africa to unlock priority public health, vaccine and medical investment. The EIB is pleased to provide EUR 22 million to support redevelopment of the National Health Laboratory by the Rwanda Biomedical Centre, alongside EUR 5 million from Team Europe and World Health Organisation partners. Upgrading medical diagnosis will enable Rwandans to benefit from high quality health care and ensure a quicker response to future pandemics” said Thomas Östros, European Investment Bank Vice President.

“Team Europe is working with partners across Africa to strengthen healthcare and improve resilience to future health emergencies. Combining EIB financing and EU grant support and technical assistance will enable Rwanda to benefit from world class diagnosis at the National Health Laboratory.” said Ambassador Nicola Bellomo, Head of the European Union Delegation to Rwanda.

Largest ever EIB health engagement in East Africa

The largest ever EIB financing for health investment in East Africa will finance construction of a new medical diagnosis and research facility at Rwanda’s central health implementation agency in Kigali.

The new 20 year European Investment Bank loan is provided under the EIB dedicated Covid-19 Health and Economic Resilience approved by European finance ministers within weeks of the COVID-19 pandemic and enabling streamlined financing to be provided across Africa.

The project is a key priority under the COVID-19 National Response Plan. The project will also benefit from a EUR 5 million European Union grant, under the Africa Investment Platform and European Development Funds to co-finance the project and EUR 1.5m to enable World Health Organisation best-practice project implementation.

The Rwanda Biomedical Centre conducts scientific research, provides diagnostics services, and implements innovative health interventions to protect the nation against diseases and other health threats. RBC was established in 2011 to improve the health of the Rwandan population by providing high quality, affordable and sustainable health care services.

The EIB has operated in Rwanda since 1977 and provided more than EUR 206 million for private and public investment across the country.