writers Lyu Tianran, Zhang Gaiping KIGALI (Xinhua) --
The Central Business District (CBD) in capital Kigali
reminds Wu Wenjun, general manager of the Rwanda 2000 Group, a
Chinese private enterprise, of its counterparts in U.S. and
It is as clean and well-planned, said
Wu, who studied in Canada.
However, it was a different story in
Wu’s parents started doing business in
Rwanda in 1996. When they first arrived in the landlocked
country, the CBD area had only small wholesale and retail shops,
the roads were potholed, and the houses were old and low.
But in the past two decades, Kigali
has changed dramatically. Chinese enterprises have constructed
several highrises in the CBD area, including several national
The 20-story Kigali City Tower can be
seen from far away. Built by China Civil Engineering
Construction Corporation (CCECC), the tower is one of the
highest buildings in Rwanda. It comprises a cinema, a
supermarket, shops and offices.
Standing on the rooftop of a new villa
in Vision City, the biggest housing project in Rwanda undertaken
by CCECC, David Rwego, a 38-year-old carpenter, can see Kigali
City Tower clearly, a project he worked on many years ago.
“When we were constructing Kigali City
Tower, that place looked like a village. Looking at that area
from here now, I can feel Rwanda’s development brought about by
China,” he said. “Working together with Chinese, Rwanda will be
even more beautiful.”
The Makuza Peace Plaza is another
building constructed by CCECC. Unveiled by Rwandan President
Paul Kagame in 2015, the business center is one of the largest
in the country.
Other Chinese enterprises have also
participated in the development of the CBD area. Top
International Engineering Corporation constructed the
headquarters of Cogebanque, a commercial bank. CRJE (East
Africa) Ltd. is constructing the 12-story twin-tower
headquarters of Rwanda Utilities Regulatory Authority.
“Thanks to good governance, Rwanda has
changed so much in the recent 10 years,” said Bright Coleb
Shema, the 22-year-old concierge of a hotel in the CBD.
Shema said the CBD not only
facilitates consumption but also brings youths together to
communicate and work with one another and get to know how to do
According to Wang Lei, general manager
of CCECC in Rwanda and deputy chief of the Association of
Chinese Enterprises in Rwanda, Chinese enterprises are important
constructors in the country. They implement projects, train
workers and introduce advanced technology in housing
“Over the past decade, Rwanda has
experienced rapid development in city construction as well as
social and economic development,” Wang said. “As a builder who
has been witnessing Rwanda’s development, I’m deeply proud of
the Chinese enterprises in Rwanda.”