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Rwanda and Japan celebrate cooperation in energy sector development

Kigali, July 20, 2022 – In the framework of the celebrating 60 years anniversary of the cooperation between Rwanda and Japan, the Minister of Infrastructure Hon. Dr. Ernest Nsabimana together with His Excellency Mr. Masahiro IMAI, the Ambassador of Japan to Rwanda, visited different electrical infrastructure projects supported by the Government of Japan under this cooperation. 

Since the year 2011, the Government of Japan has been supporting Rwanda’s energy sector to improve the quality of power supply and ensure the network reliability and stability, through a series of grants under a project dubbed “Improvement of Substation and Distribution Network”. The project was implemented into 3 consecutive phases with a total cost of 7,308,000,000 Japanese Yens. 

The first phase started in 2011, consisting of a grant amounting JPY 2,454,000,000 (then 25 million USD approximately). The project rehabilitated 3 substations in the City of Kigali (Birembo, Jabana and Gikondo) and 2 substations in the Eastern Province (Rwinkwavu and Musha). It also upgraded the 17km distribution network in Huye District from 6.6kV to 30kV. This strongly contributed to the improvement of the quality of power supply to a big number of REG customers and reduction of power losses. 

The second phase which kicked off in 2016 aimed at constructing Ndera substation as well as the Murindi and Kabuga power-switching stations, in Gasabo and Kicukiro Districts, City of Kigali. The project intended to enhance and encourage sustainable economic activities and in turn lower costs of doing business, while improving living standards. The project grant amounted JPY 2,219,000,000 (then 18.4million USD approx.) 

The 3rd phase of the grant was JPY 2,635,000,000 (then approx. 22 million USD). It consists of constructing a new 110/15kV substation with 2 power transformers with of 10 MW each in Gasogi (Ndera Sector, Gasabo District). As of today, the construction of Gasogi substation is at its completion phase (the progress of implementation is estimated at 98%) and is expected to be fully completed and energized on July, 31st 2022. 

His Excellency the Ambassador of Japan said that he hopes that the grants provided will greatly contribute to stabilize power supply in Rwanda. 

"In Rwanda, infrastructure development including the energy sector is one of the priority areas of Japan's development cooperation policy.[ ...] We are delighted by our long term cooperation with Rwanda to achieve its development targets in the energy sector" he said. 

The Minister of Infrastructure, Dr. Ernest Nsabimana, said that much has been registered through this cooperation to achieve Rwanda’s economic development goals.

“I would like to express the Government of Rwanda’s gratitude towards the support given by the Government of Japan in the development of Rwanda’s infrastructure sector and many other sectors. These 3 consecutive projects have not only enabled us to stabilize our network and ensure reliability of power supply, but it has also helped us to upgrade our existing networks to reduce technical power losses”. The Minister noted.

In connection with the economic development targets, the Government of Rwanda through Rwanda Energy Group has embarked on a country-wide development of electricity infrastructure to provide access to electricity and realizing its primary target of a 100% access by the year 2024 from the current rate of 73%. 

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