The Federal Republic of Somalia could become a member of the East African Community (EAC) in November 2023, said the region’s Secretary General, Peter Mathuki, at the Africa Investment Forum in Marrakech, Morocco.
At the Ordinary Heads of State Summit, which is set for November 23–24 in Arusha, the presidents of the surrounding countries are anticipated to support Somalia’s admission.
Mathuki stated before a panel on November 9 at the Africa Investment Forum in Marrakech, Morocco, that Ethiopia has indicated interest in joining the bloc, which is aiming to reach the whole Horn of Africa, after Mogadishu.
“The East African Community is one of the building blocks of the African Union and it’s fast-growing. We have DR Congo as the latest member, plus Kenya, Uganda, Tanzania, South Sudan, Burundi, Rwanda, and Uganda. That is a market of around 300 million people. And this November, we are likely to admit Somalia into the Community. The coastline of the East African Community will stretch almost 500,000 kilometers. And we look forward to more expansion; we are looking at Ethiopia, which has shown interest in joining the Community. So, at the end of the day, we are looking at a market of close to 700 million people,” he said.
The panel, which included leaders of the Southern African Development Community, Ecowas, Comesa, EAC, and Comesa, discussed the goal of integrating Africa.
Dr. Mathuki emphasized the importance of the private sector in promoting intraregional trade and integration and stated that the EAC is people-centered. According to him, intra-EAC commerce has increased from less than 10 % to almost 20 % during the last ten years.
The standard gauge railway that will run from the port of Dar es Salaam to Burundi and the Democratic Republic of the Congo, according to the country’s minister of infrastructure Dieudonne Dukundane, will revolutionize trade and the exploitation of the rich mineral potential that all three share. Once completed, the railway will save Burundi roughly $70 million in transportation expenses.
Source : Region Week