Rwanda has won praise for its open visa policy that has enabled it attract foreign investments, a report by the African Development Bank (AfDB) shows.
Data from the AfDB which launched the first Africa Visa Openness Index shows Africa remains largely closed off to African travelers due to slow visa processing requirements.
“Opening up a country’s visa regime is a quick-win on development that remains untapped,” said Moono Mupotola, Director of Regional Integration and Trade at the AfDB.
Analysts say the ease in visa openness is helping the tiny landlocked country remain on course on its goal to be a middle-income economy by 2020.
It is estimated that cross border trade between Rwanda and her neighbors has increased by 50% while the EAC single tourist visa enabled Rwanda increase tourist arrivals by 17% in 2015.
In recent years, the country has heavily invested in key sectors of the economy such as tourism and energy and economic outlook for the east African country remains strong.
The government hopes to establish universal access to energy by 2020 and the first phase is scheduled to connect 70% of the country’s households by 2018.
According to the African Development Bank, GDP growth in Rwanda is projected to rise to 7.5% in 2016.
We do hope that other African nations can leverage on their visa policies to also attract investors into their country.