ARUSHA, Tanzania, February 10, 2012/African Press Organization (APO)/ — The Secretary General of the East African Community, Amb. Dr. Richard Sezibera yesterday held an Economic Roundtable Dialogue on regional integration of the EAC and efforts on strengthening cooperative relationship with non-partner states at the Japanese Ministry of Foreign Affairs in Tokyo, Japan.
Addressing participants from the Ministries of Foreign Affairs and that of Economy, Trade and Industry, as well as JICA and other Japanese officials, Amb. Sezibera appealed for investments in the EAC from non partner states to boost the industrial and income bases for the region. He said major investments were required for infrastructure, industrial plants, mining, energy production and commercial agriculture.
The Secretary General reiterated that the development partners and non partner state actors had played and continued to play a pivotal role in the development of the EAC. He noted that steady progress was being made in deepening the integration process of the EAC and benefits from the attained stages of integration were evident from the rising intra-EAC trade figures and cross regional investments.
Amb. Sezibera informed his audience that the Treaty for the Establishment of the East African Community and the various decisions and directives of the EAC Summit of the Heads of States and the Council of Ministers provides wide latitude for collaboration between the EAC and non partner states including the development partners.
“Several instruments and frameworks have been approved to underpin collaboration between the EAC and non partner states among them – Ambassadorial credentials; financing agreements; memoranda of understanding; trade and investment frameworks; bilateral agreements” affirmed the Secretary General.
He noted that several countries, including Japan, had accredited their Ambassadors and High Commissioners and that the process was approved by the Council of Ministers as a way of enhancing cooperation between EAC and many of the countries that have supported the integration process.
In terms of financing agreements, Amb. Sezibera disclosed that EAC had benefitted from support under such arrangements from the Government of Japan, the Federal Republic of Germany, the African Development Bank, the World Bank, Canada, the United Kingdom, the Commonwealth Secretariat, and Sweden among others.
The financing agreements are negotiated between the EAC and the development partners and the scope of the support is agreed prior to the signing of the agreement.
East African Community (EAC)