Africa Innovation Summit opens in Rwanda.

Titi Bamigboye, Abuja

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The 2018 Africa Innovation Summit (AIS) has kicked off on Wednesday 6th of June in Rwanda’s Capital, Kigali.

The AIS is a platform that brings together stakeholders from all over the world to discuss on ways of harnessing the innovation potential of the African continent.

Declaring the 2 day summit open, Rwanda’s Prime Minister,  Honourable Edouard Ngirente said that the challenge facing Africa is that of building a robust ecosystems of innovation.

I am happy that AIS is helping our countries build a culture of innovation as a way of life. It is a critical element of development and economic growth. In Rwanda, we will be launching a research and innovation fund to address the key needs of our country. Resolutions and recommendations from AIS will play a key role,” the Prime Minister said.

According to organisers  of the event, AIS II will focus on innovative and disruptive solutions to the major challenges facing African countries, which include energy access, water, food insecurity, health systems, and governance. .

“The AIS puts African innovators front and centre. They are the people working daily to identify Africa’s challenges and develop appropriate solutions to create the continent we all want to see in the future. They do this with very little local support”, said Dr. Olugbenga Adesida, Co-Director of AIS,

“The basic fact is that Africa cannot outsource its development. We aim to change this by not only creating dialogue around the challenges and opportunities our innovators face, but also to foster concrete, multi-stakeholder action to support and scale their businesses. We will all be better off if African innovators are provided with conducive ecosystems to thrive.”

The summit holding for the second time will continue till the 8th and is expected to help create a community of innovators that will not only meet to dialogue on solutions but also create ecosystems that will enable them to share ideologies beyond the summit.

A group of 50 innovators have been selected to engage stakeholders in discussing potential solutions to some of the challenges being experienced in some African communities this year.

The AIS II follows the first Africa Innovation Summit (AIS) that took place in Praia, Cabo Verde in February 2014.