The Rwandan government and the African Union Commission (AUC) on Saturday concluded agreements for the establishment of the headquarters of the first ever African Medicines Agency in Kigali.
On 10 June, Rwanda signed an agreement with the African Union to host the headquarters of the African Medicines Agency in Kigali.
The signing comes just a few days after the Rwandan authorities officially agreed to host the AMA's headquarters on their territory.
In 2019, the African countries adopted the treaty establishing the Agency, which came into force in 2021.
Its creation is part of the African Union's strategy to reduce the continent's dependence on pharmaceutical products supplied by foreign countries.
Africa imports 97% of the pharmaceutical products it needs.
The agency should regulate and harmonize this market on the continent, encourage production in Africa and counter the traffic in counterfeit medicines.
For Minata Samaté Cessouma, AU Commissioner for Health, Africa must prepare for other pandemics after Covid-19, and the agency's objective will be to propose "African solutions".
More than four years after the adoption in 2019 of the treaty establishing the African Medicines Agency, this is a first step towards making this new African Union body operational, according to the Rwandan Minister of Health, Sabin Nsanzimana.
Staff recruitment will be discussed in ten days' time, again in Kigali, during the second extraordinary session of the 23 States that have ratified the treaty establishing the agency.