Category Archives: Current Affairs

Rwanda, Inc. Authors Editorial in FORBES

The Markets Endorse Rwanda’s Path To Economic Growth

By Andrea Redmond & Patricia Crisafulli

300px-President_Paul_Kagame_of_Rwanda_by_David_Shankbone1
President Paul Kagame of Rwanda at the 2010 Tribeca Film Festival.
(Photo credit: Wikipedia)[/caption]

Amid the rhetoric, pro and con, around Rwanda, the impartial voice of the marketplace has spoken, with a ringing endorsement of its economic turnaround and prospects for continued growth.

Last week, Rwanda’s debut on the global bond market raised $400 million with an offering that was heavily over-subscribed by nearly eight times. Final yield on the 10-year bonds of 6.875% was less than reported expectations in the low-7% area, due to strong buyer interest. Proceeds will go to repayment of bank loans, infrastructure such as a hydropower project, expansion of the national airline RwandAir, and the completion of a convention center in the capital of Kigali.

The successful bond issue triggered a flurry of enthusiastic postings on Twitter from Rwandan government officials (very savvy users of social media). Finance Minister Claver Gatete hailed a “great day for Rwanda after the investors have shown confidence in our economy….” President Paul Kagame tweeted his congratulations to those who worked to bring the bond offering to a successful conclusion, adding “Let’s continue forward.”

John Corcoran on Adult Literacy

From the San Diego Union Tribune:

corcoranADULT LITERACY DESERVES FOCUS

“My task, which I am trying to achieve by the power of the written word is to make you hear, to make you feel … to make you see.” Joseph Conrad, “Lord Jim”

The number of adults reading at an elementary-grade level has grown beyond the 50 percent level in the United States and continues to grow.

The ability to maximize our greatest potential as residents is founded upon each individual possessing basic literacy skills (the fundamentals of learning and communication). Yet we are ignoring the fact that 90 million adults living in America are challenged when reading the business language of the world: English. We can no longer accept the status quo that exists today in too many of our schools. More than 30 percent of our students drop out of school, and if you are African-American, it’s 50 percent, and if you’re Hispanic, it’s 54 percent.

Jason Kelly – Socks For Japan

How Citizens Can Help Survivors
by Jason Kelly

jason_kelly_gray_200On March 11, 2011, one of the largest earthquakes ever to hit Japan sent a tsunami deep into cities and towns along the coast of Tohoku, the northeastern region of Honshu, the country’s largest island. The wave killed 16,000 people and destroyed or damaged more than a million buildings.

I’m an American living an hour north of Tokyo in a city called Sano, and that quake is still in my bones. It sounded like wind approaching underground. The power went out and none of us knew until the next day the devastation that lay farther north. When we saw it on the news and recognized places we’d been, we had to help.

Helping after a natural disaster is not easy, however. Most relief organizations advise staying out of the way and just donating money. Those who’ve been in disaster zones around the world tell stories of people dumping piles of unsorted junk that nobody wants to pick through. Kindhearted supporters helping the wrong way like this make the situation worse, not better. Yet, there is a way for citizens to help directly by bringing gifts beyond the life support provided by governmental and non-governmental organizations. Small groups of volunteers can comfort survivors personally and give them hope.