The East Africa Community (EAC) Secretary General, Amb Richard Sezibera, has held discussions with the TradeMark East Africa (TMEA) Chief Executive Mr Frank Matsaert to plan for TMEA’s support for the next phase, 2016-2022.
The meeting took place today at the EAC Headquarters in Arusha, Tanzania, and was attended by Dr. Enos Bukuku, EAC Deputy Secretary General in charge of Planning and Infrastructure, Mr. David Stanton, TMEA Director General, and ministerial representatives from the five Partner States.
With the aim of improving the quality of life of East Africans through competitiveness, value added production, trade and investments, the EAC, through TMEA support, has improved the infrastructure at Mombasa Port; constructed road network between Ntungamo to Mirama Hill in Uganda and Port Reitz to Kipevu West in Kenya; improved on the customs clearance time along the borders and carried out several sensitization campaigns to small cross border traders on the opportunities and facilities of the Integration Process.
“I wish to express my gratitude to TMEA for supporting the Integration Agenda,” said Dr. Sezibera. “As we move more towards monetary and fiscal integration, we need to strengthen institutional capacities, nurture vibrant trade and enhance financial markets within the region,” he added.
Despite the challenges since the re-establishment of the EAC, there is no doubt that Partner States have made considerable progress in their efforts to integrate. Efforts have been made in the harmonization of policies, while improvements have been made in the areas of trade, macroeconomic policies, infrastructure, and ICTs.
The decision by Common Market for Eastern and Southern Africa (COMESA), East African Community (EAC) and Southern African Development Community (SADC) to establish a single free trade zone for the 26 member countries goes a long way to deepen the integration agenda for the Community.
“We are very keen on continuing supporting the Integration Agenda,” said Mr. Matsaert. “With strong commitment and guidance from the Secretary General and his team, we will be able to carve out key priority activities to carry out in the next phase,” he noted.
By Kawira Mutisya