BUJUMBURA December 4th (ABP) – Burundi Prime Minister Gervais Ndirakobuca received in audience on November 30, 2023, four authorities, namely the regional director of the international financial company in the East Africa region, Ms. Mary Porter Peschka, the ambassador of the Kingdom of Belgium to Burundi, Winner Michael, the ambassador of the Kingdom of the Netherlands to Burundi, Mrs. Houben lianne hellen as well as the general director of the mobile telephone company Lumitel, Mr. Nguyen Thuc Nam.
At the end of those hearings, the spokesperson for the Prime Minister, Mr. Moïse Nkurunziza told the media that Mrs. Peschka came to review the achievements of that company in Burundi. She indicated that that company has already supported, in the form of credit, different commercial banks with an envelope of five million euros, each so that those banks, in turn, grant credit to small and medium-sized businesses. She added that that company is currently carrying out four in-depth studies that could stimulate investors to come and operate in the sector of exporting tea and coffee but also importing sugar and fertilizers, Mr. Nkurunziza.
Furthermore, spokesperson Nkurunziza took stock of the mapping already carried out by local businesses and on the empowerment of women so that they benefit from support for their self-development.
For his part, Mr. Ndirakobuca pointed out that the government is counting on two imperatives for those investors to find a good business climate. That concerns renewable or hydroelectric energy and digitalization which is essential for good governance, for business fluidity but also for transparency.
The Ambassador of the Kingdom of Belgium came for a courtesy visit. According to Mr. Nkurunziza, the two authorities discussed the new project which will be carried out in Burundi from 2024 to 2028.
Winner Michael indicated that this project will essentially support four areas which are health, agriculture, education and good governance, with a budget of five million euros.
For his part, the Prime Minister praised the good collaboration between Burundi and the Kingdom of Belgium, meaning that the links that exist between them are historic links.
The Ambassador of the Kingdom of the Netherlands discussed with the Prime Minister the program which will extend over four years in different areas. An envelope of 50 million euros is intended to intervene in the areas of security, food and nutrition. An envelope of 14 million euros for the areas of education, employment and youth entrepreneurship. The 3rd component concerns the rule of law and human rights with a budget of 30.5 million euros as well as the sexual and reproductive health component and related rights with 36 million euros.
The Prime Minister finally granted an audience to the general director of the Lumitel company who came to express his pride in the good partnership existing between that company and the government of Burundi. He also came to speak with the Prime Minister on the achievements made during the ten years of existence of that company in Burundi and took advantage of that opportunity to invite him to participate in the ceremonies of December 15, 2023.
On that occasion, Nguyen Truc Nam announced that Lumitel currently has a turnover of 160 million US dollars and that it has more than three million subscribers nationwide. Concerning a body which could intervene in the event of disputes between mobile telephone operators and the ARCT, raised by the general director of lumitel, the Prime Minister indicated to appeal to the Ministry of Finance before referring the matter to the judicial authorities, each time there is a dispute between the one who pays and the one who receives a tax.
Gervais Ndirakobuca finally thanked that company for its support in the field of education and asked them to improve the quality of their services because their customers are lamenting, he reported.