According to the African Development Bank (AFDB), more than 30 million Africans (about 3% of Africa’s total population) are living outside their home countries. This figure includes those living within other African countries. These African migrants send money to their families in Africa. Remittances by African migrants play an important role as a source of financing and foreign exchange for African households and countries. For Africa as a whole, remittance inflows have more than quadrupled since 1990, reached US $40 billion in 2011. This represents about 3% of Africa’s total GDP. Globally, the amount of remittances reached US $300 billion in 2010, surpassing foreign direct investments (FDI) and official development assistance (ODA) combined.
Over the past decade, the importance of money transfer flows between African countries and the rest of the world has received widespread attention from the media, governments, development agencies and the private sector. This attention, and especially the quantiﬁcation of money transfer ﬂows, has brought greater competition and the adoption of new technologies among Money Transfer Operators (MTOs). Together these factors have contributed to sharply lowering the cost of sending money.
In 2007 the government of Rwanda established the NDBP (National Domestic Biogas Program) in partnership with SNV (The Netherlands Development Organization) and GIZ (The German Development Organization) as financial and technical support partners. The objective of the program was to develop a commercial and sustainable domestic sector, substituting firewood with biogas for cooking and increasing agricultural production through provision of bio-slurry as a fertilizer.
A team of researchers, led by Samuel K. Sia, associate professor of biomedical engineering at Columbia University, has introduced a new cheap mobile microfluidic chip that can complete an immediate diagnosis of three simultaneous infectious diseases in only 15 minutes! From a single finger prick, the dongle can perform a tri-plexed immunoassay not currently existing in a single test format, the diagnosis includes: HIV antibodies, treponemal-specific antibodies for syphilis, and nontreponemal antibodiesfor an active syphilis infection.
During the 1990s almost all infrastructure in Rawanda was damaged. In the past few years, however, Rwanda has made significant progress to recover its economy and solar energy is starting on the path to what could be a fantastic Cleanleap. One of the big stories is the work from GigaWatt Rwanda Limited in developing the first grid-level solar electric generating plant in the East African region.