Eni, an Italian multinational energy company, has signed four agreements with the Government of Rwanda to develop innovative joint initiatives in agriculture, protection of unique forest ecosystems, technology and health..
In regards to the agricultural sector, the agreement signed with the National Industrial Research and Development Agency envisages the launch of a pilot project for the production of varieties of seeds for oil crops and the use of drones for soil analysis and crop monitoring. The project will use the most advanced precision farming techniques to produce quality seeds in Rwanda that will be used in the agri-feedstock initiatives launched by Eni in other African countries.
The company has also signed an agreement with the Rwanda Development Board and the non-profit tech start-up, Rainforest Connection, to protect forests and generate carbon credits. The parties will test cutting-edge technologies in areas with high levels of biodiversity. Autonomous drones and acoustic sensors will be used in the experimentation. Using artificial intelligence algorithms, they will detect potential threats and respond to alarms with immediate targeted interventions.
In the health sector, Eni Foundation, together with the Ministry of Health (MoH) and the Ministry of Finance and Economic Planning (MINECOFIN), signed a three-year agreement to strengthen basic maternal and child health services, with a focus on the management of obstetric emergencies, in four districts of the country: Gisagara, Musanze, Nyagatare and Rulindo. The initiative includes the construction of health infrastructure and a capacity-building and training programme for communities and health personnel.
Finally, the cooperation agreement between Eni and the Ministry of ICT and Innovation will play a cross-cutting role in supporting initiatives in areas of common interest: from precision agriculture to forest monitoring and health. The parties will collaborate to disseminate these technologies and create synergies with the country's start-ups.
Luigi Ciarrocchi, CCUS, forestry and agro-feedstock director, commented, “Just seven months after the memorandum of understanding with the Rwandan institutions, we are launching the activities in the sectors of common interest. We will work jointly to develop concrete projects for the country’s decarbonisation, leveraging a business environment that is ideal to text innovative solutions and agribusiness activities generating high-added value.”