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Rwanda Declares Visa-Free Travel for All Africans

Africans will be allowed to enter Rwanda without a visa, the country’s President Paul Kagame said at a global tourism conference in the capital Kigali.

The announcement makes the East Africa country the continent’s latest country to adopt such a step aimed at increasing free movement of people and trade. 

“We’ve also removed visa restrictions for citizens of every African country as well as many other countries. Let there be no mistake about it, any African can get on a plane to Rwanda whenever they wish and will not pay a thing to enter our country” said Kagame.

“Globally, the travel and tourism industry has recovered strongly, but the high cost of travel to Africa and within Africa remains a barrier,” he said in a speech at the 23rd Global Summit of the World Travel and Tourism Council (WTTC).

Kagame was speaking at the tourism conference where the WTTC issued a report saying Africa’s travel and tourism sector could add $168 billion to the continent’s economy over the next ten years.

The ease of visa access, improved air travel and tourism marketing were the three key steps to expanding tourist arrivals and boosting earnings from the sector, according to the report.

Other African countries that have dropped visa requirements include Benin, Seychelles and Gambia.

Kenya’s President William Ruto announced last week that all Africans would be allowed visa-free entry to Kenya, the East African region’s dominant economy, from the start of next year.

African leaders are keen to accelerate travel, trader and busines activities under the African Continental Free Trade Area (AfCFTA), a continent-wide free trade area that was launched in January 2021.

The trade bloc intends to unite more than one billion people in a $3 trillion economic bloc – the world’s largest free trade area since the World Trade Organization’s inception.

Source : Zawya