EAC convenes 2nd Development Partners' Thematic Groups Meeting
East African Community Headquarters, Arusha, Tanzania, 9th November, 2019: The 2nd East African Community Development Partner’ Group (DPG) Thematic Groups (TGs) meeting on Infrastructure and Economic Integration was convened at the EAC Headquarters in Arusha, Tanzania.
The key objective of the thematic groups meeting was to discuss thematic strategic issues in details, while ensuring alignment with Development Partners’ respective strategic goals and also resource implications.
Addressing the forum, the EAC Deputy Secretary General in charge of Productive and Social Sector, Hon. Christophe Bazivamo, on behalf of the EAC Secretary General stated that the EAC integration process is on course, and a number of achievements have been registered in all the 4 pillars of EAC integration (Customs Union, Common Market, Monetary Union and Political Federation).
He highlighted that under Customs, harmonization of cross-border rules and procedures have catapulted intra-regional trade from US$ 2.7 billion in 2016 to US$ 2.9 billion in 2017 and to 3.2 billion in 2018.
On the free movement of persons, there is no visa fee requirements for East Africans traveling across the region, some Partner States allow use of national identity cards as traveling documents and that the countries were issuing the International East African e-Passport which enables travel within the region and beyond.
On infrastructure development, the DSG informed the meeting that the EAC Partner States were jointly implementing regional infrastructure projects that had been agreed upon by the biennial infrastructure development retreats by the Summit of EAC Heads of State.
On the EAC Political Federation, Hon Bazivamo disclosed to the Development Partners that EAC will launch the national stakeholders’ consultations on the Draft Constitution for the EAC Political Confederation before the end of the month. EAC Partner State have nominated two Constitution Making Experts and one Legal Draftsman to assist in drafting a basic law for the proposed Political Confederation which is a transitional model to the Political Federation, added Bazivamo
The Deputy Secretary General expressed his appreciation to Development Partners for their commitment of and continued support.
In his remarks, Mr. Patrick Kanyimbo, the Regional Integration Coordinator from the African Development Bank said the TGs forum is valuable for Development Partners to ensure an alignment of their respective cooperation programmes with those of the EAC towards supporting the implementation of the 5th EAC Development Strategy. He commended the EAC for establishing the TGs forum noting that it would enable better coordination of development assistance by Development Partners to the Community.
On her part, the leader of the European Union delegation, Ms. Stine Hyldekjaer emphasized the need for involving all EAC institutions and representatives of key regional non-state actors including the private sector in the forum to share their valuable experience of regional integration.
The meeting discussed the current/ongoing support from Development Partners, key achievements and progress as well as sharing of the EAC Global Priorities for the FY 2020/2021, after which two break away sessions were held concurrently for the Infrastructure and Economic Integration TGs. The members of the DPG TGs also gave feedback on their current support channeled to EAC and a number of recommendations were proposed in order to establish a sustainable and solid collaboration.
The DPG TGs was attended by; Embassy representatives and technical officers from Development Partner organizations and agencies as well as representatives from EAC Organs and Institutions.
- ENDS -
For more information, please contact:
Simon Peter Owaka
Senior Public Relations Officer
Corporate Communications and Public Affairs Department
Tel: +255 768 552087
Email: sowaka [at] eachq.org
About the East African Community Secretariat:
The East African Community (EAC) is a regional intergovernmental organisation of six Partner States, comprising Burundi, Kenya, Rwanda, South Sudan, Tanzania and Uganda, with its headquarters in Arusha, Tanzania.
The EAC Secretariat is ISO 9001: 2008 Certified