Rwanda announces visa-free travel for all Africans as continent opens up to free movement of people
Rwanda announced Thursday that it will allow Africans to travel visa-free to the country, becoming the latest nation on the continent to announce such a measure aimed at boosting free movement of people and trade to rival Europe’s Schengen zone.
President Paul Kagame made the announcement in the Rwandan capital, Kigali, where he pitched the potential of Africa as “a unified tourism destination” for a continent that still relies on 60% of its tourists from outside Africa, according to data from the United Nations Economic Commission for Africa.
“Any African, can get on a plane to Rwanda whenever they wish and they will not pay a thing to enter our country” said Kagame during the 23rd Global Summit of the World Travel and Tourism Council.
“We should not lose sight of our own continental market,” he said. “Africans are the future of global tourism as our middle class continues to grow at a fast pace in the decades to come.”
Once implemented, Rwanda will become the fourth African country to remove travel restrictions for Africans. Other countries that have waived visas to African nationals are Gambia, Benin and Seychelles.