BUJUMBURA November 29th (ABP) – The Minister of Trade, Transport, Industry and Tourism, Mrs. Marie Chantal Nijimbere proceeded Thursday, November 25, to the official opening of the innovation and entrepreneurship fair of youth organized in Bujumbura under the theme: “Innovation, entrepreneurship and leadership of young development engines in Burundi”. It has been taking place since Tuesday, November 23, 2021 at Boulevard de l’Indépendance and was jointly organized by the Ministry of East African Community Affairs, Youth, Sports and Culture, the Ministry of Trade, Transport, of Industry and Tourism, the Ministry of Communication, Information Technology and Media and the UNDP.
In her speech for the occasion, Mrs. Nijimbere said that innovations need more creativity and new ideas to create change and produce added value to existing products or services while entrepreneurship does good. ideas a business activity taking risks. Entrepreneurs get into an identified business and run it in a profitable manner, she said while adding that successful entrepreneurship is always the result of hard work of engagement and risk taking.
The Burundi National Development Plan (PND) from 2018 to 2027 sets itself the objective of structurally transforming the Burundian economy for strong, sustainable, resilient, inclusive growth and the creation of more decent jobs for all and inducing improvement. welfare, she revealed. This objective aims to exploit the growth potential of the Burundian economy in terms of productivity and job creation for inclusive and sustainable development.
Given that Burundian youth constitute the large proportion of the Burundian population, the revitalization of growth-promoting sectors can never be effective unless the potential of Burundian young people is considered as engines of development. For Mrs. Nijimbere, it is that situation which is, moreover, the great motivation for holding this fair, which aims to show decision-makers, technical and financial partners, economic operators, both public and private, and everyone that Burundian youth is active but also and above all committed to confront the challenges linked to technological, commercial and social changes.
According to her, the government of Burundi has placed the development of the potential of young people at the center of sustainable development, from which the President of the Republic continues to demonstrate her commitment to the entrepreneurship of young Burundians and the enhancement of the potential of this youth. The proof of that, she insisted, is the establishment of a youth bank, the creation of a youth guarantee and support fund, the creation of a women’s bank, the revitalization and support of cooperatives and many others. This is how she seized the opportunity to launch a vibrant appeal to young Burundian innovators and entrepreneurs to continue to perfect their projects and further develop their entrepreneurial and research spirit. To economic operators and decision-makers, she recommends that they provide technical and financial support to these young people.
For her part, the UNDP resident representative in Burundi pointed out that the youth constitute a living force of a nation but also and above all a cornerstone for sustainable development. However, she warned, without innovation and entrepreneurship, these young people will never be able to occupy this privileged place conferred on them. It is for that reason, she insisted, that the UNDP in its new approach and in its 2022-2025 strategic plan makes innovation and digitization essential levers for the implementation of its programs and development projects.
They need a formal structure and framework of champions and mentors who work with them towards better horizons through a win-win partnership with the various partners in the private sector. She took the opportunity to launch “Burundi Youth Innovator”, a platform that will be a laboratory for accelerating innovative ideas for young Burundians to support the development of their country. UNDP will advocate and work with national and financial partners and United Nations agencies to make the “Burundi Youth Innovator” a reality like the African countries where UNDP is represented.