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EPRN started the new year with a powerful edition of the Annual EPRN Conference. The event with the guiding topic "Rwandan Economy towards the Economic Development and Poverty Reduction Strategy 3 (EDPRS 3)" was the third of the annual confernece series and attracted around 500 stakeholders! We are happy to see this level of engagement and feel encouraged to continue our efforts.

The 3rd edition of our Annual EPRN Conference took place on January 26th at CBE (College of Business and Economics) in Gikondo, Kigali. Around 500 policy makers, researchers, scholars, students, and other stakeholders in the field of economics convened yesterday to discuss the macroeconomic status and future prospects of Rwandan economy. „We are excited to see such a big number of stakeholders, among them many students, at our conference. This proves that the work we are doing is relevant and it gives us confidence that our mission to sustainably strengthen economic policy research and analysis in Rwanda is on a good way to being achieved.“, said Seth Kwizera, EPRN coordinator. Numerous independent researchers had followed our call for papers for the topic “Rwandan Economy towards the Economic Development and Poverty Reduction Strategy 3 (EDPRS 3)”.

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The top seven of them were presented, covering topics like „Determinants of non-monetary poverty in Rwanda“, „Economic structural transformation: From agriculture and primary sector to knowledge-based economy and urbanisation“, „The effect of foreign aid on the real exchange rate in Rwanda“ and „Rural development policies and investment in primary education: Farmers in Rwanda“.

Dr. Hermann van Boemmel from the GIZ program Macro-Economic Advice to the Ministry of Finance and Economics (MINECOFIN) stated: „We are supporting EPRN as we think promoting collaboration between researchers and building their capacity is vital for the development of the country. This conference is one more step towards providing macroeconomic research MADE IN RWANDA that is capable of informing policy decision making.“

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The event was organized by EPRN through IPAR with support from GIZ and exceeded our expectations with the high numbers of participation. In the closing session, Prof. Thomas Kigabo, chief economist at the National Bank of Rwanda and chairman of EPRN, announced that the 4th EPRN conference will take place in September of this year. The topic will be announced in March when the call for papers will be published. „My vision for EPRN is to build up a pool of excellent economic policy researchers that can provide Rwanda with home-grown analysis and solutions. Events like this serve to encourage people, especially young people, to pursue a career in research and to keep improving their academic skills“, Prof. Kigabo said.

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A big THANK YOU to our partners and supporters IPAR Rwanda, Ministry of Finance & Economic Planning - Rwanda, University of Rwanda, National Institute of Statistics of Rwanda, National Bank of Rwanda, GIZ and AIESEC Rwanda.

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