Private sector key for transformation of region’s economy – Amb. Sezibera
ARUSHA, Tanzania, October 24, 2011/African Press Organization (APO)/ — The Secretary General of the East African Community, Amb. Dr. Richard Sezibera today emphasized the EAC’s commitment to achieve a strengthened regional market, create wealth within the region, and enhance international competitiveness.
Speaking at a ceremony where Trade Mark East Africa (TMEA) and the East African Business Council (EABC) signed a Grant and Memorandum of Understanding (MoU), the Secretary General observed that there is consensus that increased regional trade cooperation through the removal of intra-regional trade restrictions, such as tariffs, quotas and non-tariff barriers, is a critical in addressing the challenges posed by small domestic markets, limited economies of scale and increasing marginalization of developing economies in world trade.
Amb. Sezibera acknowledged that although the EAC has a population of over 130 million, a combined GDP of about $78 billion and posts a 5% average growth rate, more needed to be done to improve the bloc’s economic standing and bring growth up to between 8% and 10% if the region is to reduce its high poverty levels.
Quoting Article 7(a) of the EAC Treaty which emphasizes “a people-centred and market-driven” Community, Amb. Sezibera noted that the vibrancy of the region’s business community requires a business climate conducive to enhancing opportunity for attractive returns to investment.
He added that such can only be made possible through a range of private sector friendly development policies and institutions; infrastructure, access to services, and supporting laws and regulations.
East African Community (EAC)