By Samuel Ouma
The Africa Women Innovation and Entrepreneurship Forum (AWIEF) has announced Kigali, Rwanda, as the Host City for its 2023 conference and awards.
The announcement was made in conjunction with the Rwanda Convention Bureau during the AWIEF2022 event recently held in Cairo, Egypt, on 26 and 27 September.
The AWIEF2023 conference venue has been confirmed as the Kigali International Convention Centre (KICC), a landmark on the capital city’s landscape.
The official announcement was made after a very special and colourful host city reveal by a Rwandan delegation at AWIEF2022.
The delegation included Rwanda’s Ambassador to Egypt, H. E. Alfred Gakuba Kalisa; Esther Kunda, Director General, Innovation and Emerging Technologies, Rwanda Ministry of ICT and Innovation; members of the Women’s Chapter of Rwanda’s Private Sector Federation and representatives of the Rwanda Convention Bureau.
“We are all here grateful and honoured by the decision of AWIEF to hold its annual meeting next year in Kigali. Under the leadership of His Excellency President Paul Kagame, Rwanda has placed gender equality as a key plan of our governance,” said ambassador Alfred Gakuba Kalisa.
“However, women remain largely represented in the informal sector, in micro-enterprises. Elevating this large segment of our productive population into the formal sector would require sustainable, technological, and financial efforts by all stakeholders and the continued strong advocacy of AWIEF,” he added.
“Please rest assured that the Rwandan government, through the Rwanda Convention Bureau, will ensure that your stay in Kigali is enjoyable and productive.”
AWIEF Founder and CEO Irene Ochem said: “Kigali is one of the most exciting cities in Africa right now and is a significant hub for business, technology, and innovation on the continent. Rwanda is also at the forefront of gender equality and inclusion in governance and business leadership. It is an ideal country to host the high-level and dynamic discussions about women’s economic empowerment, entrepreneurship, investing, technology, and innovation in Africa that are the hallmarks of an AWIEF conference.”
The conference brings together senior government leaders, entrepreneurs, start-ups, thought leaders, policymakers, international development partners, investors, CSOs, academia, and media for dialogue and discussions on women empowerment, entrepreneurship, investing, technology, and innovation in Africa.