MINICT and RICTA partner to sensitize Rwandans on uptake of .RW as preferred domain name

In a bid to increase Rwanda’s digital footprint (most especially on the Internet), the Ministry of ICT and Innovation in partnership with RICTA Rwanda have launched a campaign to increase awareness and adoption of .RW(Akadomo RW) as the preferred country level domain. This took place on Wednesday; August 7, 2019 at Telecom House, Kigali.

Launching the three month’s campaign which has been dubbed ‘Nahisemo .RW’, the Minister of ICT and Innovation told media that there is need for Rwandan enterprises, businesses and institutions to adopt the usage of .RW (Akadomo RW) as their domain of choice if the country is to increase and stamp her digital footprint.

“As we launch the ‘Nahisemo .RW’ campaign we are aiming at increasing Rwanda’s digital profile by rallying Rwandan
businesses and organizations with web presence to take-up the .RW country level domain. Uptake of the .RW domain is a good fit into our vision of transitioning Rwanda into becoming a digital economy which will see the creation of a new market place, consolidated into a single digital market for the region and also for the continent,” Paula Ingabire said.

“There is this notion that other domains are better than our country domain. Having a .RW identity promotes local
consumption and promotes localization of our businesses. We encourage Rwandan businesses with global footprint to localize their domain names and also have that pride that they are a Rwandan brand. We also calling upon businesses and organizations working in Rwanda to use the .RW domain because it affirms to our collective commitment to promote the consumption of locally home grown solutions,” she added.

Currently as a country we are slightly more than 8000 Rwandans Domain names. Out of this number, 4000 domains are registered as .RW and the rest are on .com, .org, and others.
According to RICTA’s Acting CEO, Grace Ingabire Rwanda’s recorded Internet growth will be undoubtedly insignificant if the country lags behind in terms of .RW country domains. She added that the more the country increases the number of .RW domain the better it is for the country’s digital economy. She encourages the other Rwandan businesses to embrace .RW.

For every Rwandan website registered outside it’s a loss to our digital economy. If all Rwandan businesses register RW, our digital presence as a country also increases which is an added advantage to our efforts to promote our Rwandan identity online,” said Grace Ingabire.

RICTA is an acronym that means ‘Rwanda Internet Community and Technology Alliance, an organization mandated with the management of domain names in Rwanda.
The name of the campaign ‘Nahisemo’ is adopted from a Kinyarwanda word that is loosely translated to mean ‘I Choose’, thus ‘I choose .RW (or AkadomoRW)’. It is designed as a value proposition campaign with different personalities representing different market segments, testifying why they ‘choose’ to use .RW as their preferred domain. According to the Minister of ICT the Nahisemo .RW campaign is timely because it also ties in with the national e-commerce strategy which encourages Rwandan business owners to adapt to solutions like online product listings, having a web-presence and also change of mind-set from having a physical addressed to digital shops.