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Rwanda and DR Congo sign deal to jointly extract methane gas in Lake Kivu

Yanditswe Mar, 06 2020 15:40 PM | 13,257 Views

The Government of Rwanda and the Democratic Republic of Congo have signed a Validation Act of the Contract of the Review of the Management Prescriptions for the development of Lake Kivu Methane gas resources between the two countries. 

The Validation Act was signed this Thursday in Kigali, by State Minister in charge of Hydrocarbons in the Democratic Republic of Congo, Rubens Mikindo Muhima and Minister of Environment, Dr. Mujawamariya Jeanne d'Arc and witnessed by Minister of Infrastructure, Claver Gatete. 

This understanding has ways in which the gas will be extracted without affecting the lives of the citizens or the marine life.

The minister for infrastructure,  Claver Gatete who led the meeting explained that the gas beneath Lake Kivu is worth about 65 billion.  

Gatete said: "We have companies that will work on this under 1 agreement. I know some of you use gas to cook at home but that’s from petrol this will be natural gas and will be used in various places and will be made in Rwanda.  Those who live on the congo side which is Goma, Bukavu will also reap from the benefit,"

On the other hand, the DRC representative the minister Muhima called for a speedy approach to this. He noted: "We will learn from Rwanda, but we want this t be implemented immediately because we have already signed the agreements. We should work on this immediately because there is a lot to gain from Lake Kivu and to protect,"

Over the last 5 years, different agreements have been made over the mining of methane gas but the implementation stage always took a backstage. The minister for environment Dr Jeanne d'Arc Mujawamariya, however, says this time there is hope.   

She said: "That’s true. This agreement has taken time but we were all getting ready and them taking time to understand this project well. Rwanda had understood this but it was important that we all are on the same page. We are happy that we are now moving in one accord and we have many projects together," 

These agreements comes shortly after a delegation of experts had convened to discuss and restructure the agreements.   

By Innocent Mugabo

Photos by MINIFRA. 

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