By Wallace Mawire
The Government of Rwanda has signed a Memorandum of Understanding (MoU) with the African Risk Capacity (ARC) on cooperation to address the impact of extreme weather events in Rwanda.
The MoU sets out terms and conditions and a framework to facilitate cooperation and collaboration between ARC Agency and the Government of Rwanda to address the impact of extreme weather events, including providing training support to Government personnel.
Rwanda was one of the first signatories of the ARC Establishment Agreement in November 2012) and has a seat on the ARC Agency Governing Board, and its Government has been a strong advocate for food security in the continent, and the imperative for Africa to take more ownership of its development.
Signing on behalf of the Rwandan Government, the Minister of Agriculture & Animal Resources Dr. Mukeshima Gerardine described the cooperation agreement with the African Risk Capacity as a watershed in his country’s commitment to develop a holistic risk management strategy against climate and other natural disasters.
Under the MoU and the derivative workplan, African Risk Capacity will use its parametric insurance tool, the Africa RiskView, to support the Government of Rwanda’s efforts in designing ex-ante customised responses to extreme weather events and other natural disaster risks aimed at reducing impact on the population.
Mohamed Beavogui congratulated the Government and the dynamic leadership of President Kagame both in Rwanda and on the continent. “The signing of the MoU with Rwanda is a testimony of our commitment to progressively provide technical cooperation on climate risk profiling as well as capacity building in disaster risk management in manner that boosts the country’s resilience against the impacts of climate risk and other natural disasters”, he said.
In line with the agreement, ARC will also provide training in risk modelling and quantification to Government personnel. This will facilitate the definition of the country’s risk transfer parameters for each extreme weather event; and discussion on risk transfer opportunities to derive suitable solutions to Rwanda’s climate, food security, agriculture and disaster risk management strategies.
The MoU provides the collaboration framework for the Programme workplan activities and for future activities, as well as a software license for the use of the Africa RiskView (ARV), developed by ARC Agency for monitoring extreme weather events and to underpin the index-based insurance offered by the ARC Limited.
It is at the discretion of the Government of Rwanda to take out an ARC Limited insurance coverage.
The CEO of ARC Limited, Dolika Banda, commended the Government of Rwanda and the team of specialists involved in the process that led to the signing of the MoU. According to her, “the African Risk Capacity is glad to begin a deliberative technical collaboration with the Government of Rwanda towards providing veritable parametric insurance tools to further strengthen the country’s impressive growth record and macroeconomic stability which are already anchored on solid agricultural investment.”
Rwanda has steadily committed to generating sustained agricultural growth, increasing the share of the national budget allocated to agriculture from 3 percent in 2006 to 10.01 percent in 2015, according to official records.
The African Risk Capacity model is an innovative, cost-effective, and is proving that it can assist member-states to strengthen their capacities to better plan, prepare and respond to extreme weather events and natural disasters, thereby achieving the food security for their populations.
About African Risk Capacity (ARC) ARC consists of ARC Agency and ARC Insurance Company Limited (ARC Ltd). ARC Agency was established in 2012 as a Specialised Agency of the African Union to help Member States improve their capacities to better plan, prepare and respond to weather-related disasters. ARC Ltd is a mutual insurance facility providing risk transfer services to Member States through risk pooling and access to reinsurance markets; it is owned by Member States with active insurance policies as well as KfW Development Bank and the UK Department of International Development (DfiD), as capital contributors.
With the support of the United Kingdom, Germany, Sweden, Switzerland, Canada, France, The Rockefeller Foundation and the United States, ARC assists AU Member States in reducing the risk of loss and damage caused by extreme weather events affecting Africa’s populations by providing, through sovereign disaster risk insurance, targeted responses to natural disasters in a more timely, cost-effective, objective and transparent manner. ARC is now using its expertise to help tackle some of the other greatest threats faced by the continent, including outbreaks and epidemics.