At the end of February 2018, the German federal development ministry, together with Volkswagen, Siemens, SAP, GIZ and Inros Lackner, launched the mobility partnership “Moving Rwanda” for the Rwandan capital, Kigali, and surrounding region. Inros Lackner SE will contribute expertise in the development of infrastructure and in logistics, being well placed to do this thanks to the company’s many years of project experience in Africa.
The project “Moving Rwanda” was initiated as part of the “Strategic Partnership Digital Africa” programme of the German Federal Ministry for Economic Cooperation and Development (BMZ). With “Moving Rwanda”, Volkswagen’s soon-to-commence car production in Kigali will be supplemented by modern integrated mobility services such as environmentally-friendly app-based car sharing models. Rwanda is one of Africa’s leaders in terms of economic growth, digitalisation and urban development, and ambitious plans for smart mobility are being developed. In 2016, for instance, a bus system with on-board Wi-Fi was introduced, cycling was actively promoted and a focus was placed on footpath construction.
“The further development of individual mobility with respect to digital and smart solutions in the field of logistics is an area in which we can especially contribute our expertise. This includes the know-how of our transportation specialists and the local knowledge of goods flows in Africa. In addition to the development of “green” logistics centres, the delivery of packages in the luggage compartment as “last-mile logistics” is being discussed within the partnership”, explains Dr. Klaus Richter, company director of Inros Lackner SE. The company is currently engaged on numerous projects in Africa, including the development and extension of ports in Mombasa, Kenya, and Dar es Salaam, Tanzania. Another port project involves the construction of a new port on Lake Victoria in Uganda, for which Inros Lackner provided the master plans. Current activities in West Africa include road and bridge construction projects, and coastal protection and flood prevention measures are ongoing in Tunisia, Benin and Mozambique.
“Since our first projects in Africa in the 1950s, we have continually expanded our activities across the continent and to date have gained experience in about 30 of its 54 countries. This was made possible not only by our long history of experience on projects in Germany, but also by cooperation with local partners. Only in this way can it be ensured that a project doesn’t suffer from delays. We consider Africa a continent of great opportunity and are continuing to expand our local presence there. In addition to various project offices, we have also established a number of subsidiaries and shareholdings – the “youngest” of these in January this year in Dakar, Senegal”, says Dr. Richter to describe the current situation in the African market, stressing also that cultural diversity is an important aspect of the company’s project teams. “Openness to other value systems and local needs, and knowledge of the markets of the various African cultures and countries are a central factor for us.”
At the launch of “Moving Rwanda”, Development Minister Müller emphasised that the initiative is a further contribution towards implementing the ‘Marshall Plan for Africa’. “Already today, over half a billion people live in Africa, and soon it will be twice as many. We need sustainable, environmentally friendly transport concepts, otherwise the cities will sink in traffic congestion, polluted air and noise. With the project “Moving Rwanda” we are placing a strong focus on digital solutions. Because three out of every four Africans have a mobile phone, but only 4% have their own cars. So the tech-savvy population can use an app to find a rideshare or to rent a car. Such modern mobility concepts can lead the way for the whole of Africa”, explained the Development Minister, before going on to describe further potential for the future: “Together with Rwandan partners, we will, for example, establish a digitalisation centre for specialists and know-how transfer in the capital, Kigali. This will provide young people with opportunities for the future in their own country – as mechanics maintaining the vehicle fleet, perhaps, or as software developers.”
Photo: © „Inga Kjer / Photothek“