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East African trade and investment news

U.S.-African partnerships: Advancing common interests

Published on September 20, 2017

This Administration seeks to do business not just in Africa, but with Africa, moving the focus of our economic relationship with the continent from aid to trade and investment. Trade will be free, fair, and reciprocal, and our investors will be more competitive. This is about creating jobs for both Americans and Africans throughout the continent.

One of our most important bipartisan endeavors in the economic arena is the African Growth and Opportunity Act, or AGOA. AGOA has been the cornerstone of U.S. economic engagement with countries of sub-Saharan Africa since 2000. Read more. Source | U.S. Department of State

Africa integration committee set to meet in Addis Ababa

Published on September 20, 2017

The 10th Session of the Committee on Regional Cooperation and Integration (CRCI10) will be held in Addis Ababa from October 31 to November 2, 2017 under the theme ‘Implementation of the Continental Free Trade Area and Shared Gains’.

The meeting will be held back-to-back with Expert Group Meetings that will review and discuss a number of crucial publications on various themes, including policy options for boosting intra-African investment through regional harmonization of investment policies and treaties; how the promotion of Africa’s industrialization can be strengthened through infrastructure development and smart industrialization through trade in the context of Africa’s transformation. Read more. Source | New Business Ethiopia

Need for Tanzania to strengthen EAC ties

Published on September 20, 2017

As the government continues to improve environment of doing business and promote investments in the country, there is need for strengthening trade ties in the East African region and the world at large.

According to the data released recently, exports in the country has increased to 608.20m/-US dollar in May from 583.50m/-US dollar in April of 2017. Also exports in the country averaged 550.21m/-US dollar from 2006 until 2017, reaching an all time high of 956.50m/- US dollar in December, 2015 and a record low of 228.70m/- US dollar in March, 2006. Read more. Source | Daily News

One e-passport, one language, EAC trade starts with intra-trade

Published on September 20, 2017

Leaders (think-tanks in this vein) have thought of coming together to form joint blocs to help them address the challenges, but a prominent Nigerian ScholarChinua Achebe has begged to know if the war would be won if individual member states still treat each other with suspicion through a character he calls Okwonkwo asking his brothers a question that ‘how can we fight a common enemy if my own brothers have turned against me?’

This is the typical picture each member state ought to address to uplift young brother like South Sudan now facing famine, civil strife, poor infrastructures and others in their East Africa Community (EAC). Read more. Source | Daily News

Railway set to cut down cargo freight costs

Published on September 20, 2017

Kenya recently approved freight tariffs for the standard gauge railway, as the government seeks to meet its target of transporting 40 per cent of cargo from Mombasa port by rail.

Kenya Railways Corporation (KPC) managing director Atanas Maina told The EastAfrican that the corporation has received approvals of the tariffs from the Ministry of Transport, which will be half the road haulage rates, and will now begin discussions with transporters. Read more. Source | East African

Messe Frankfurt’s Purchase of Source Africa Trade Show Exemplifies the Potential of Market Systems Development

Published on September 19, 2017

Seven years ago, DAI began implementing the value chain portion of Southern Africa Trade Hub (SATH), a project funded by the U.S. Agency for International Development (USAID). SATH’s goal was to promote economic growth by fostering intraregional trade between select member states of the Southern African Development Community (SADC).

During DAI’s initial work planning session, Mark Bennett, our textiles and garments specialist, was tasked with commercializing a business-to-business (B2B) trade event that previous USAID projects had been funding to the tune of about $150,000 per year. Read more. Source | DAI Global

Why women entrepreneurs should embrace technological innovations

Published on September 19, 2017

As technology advances, conversations around the opportunities and risks posed by automation and digitisation on the future of work especially among women entrepreneurs have inevitably increased. It’s unbelievable to think that twenty years ago, the flexible work structures, environments, work life balance and various roles that have become fundamental to running many businesses with the help of technology did not exist.

As technology pushes many entrepreneurs and start-ups towards a future of increased automation and productivity, we also face the impending reality of jobs disappearing. Read more. Source | New Times

CFTA set to kick-off next year

Published on September 19, 2017

African continent is set to fast track continental free trade area early next year to create single market for goods and services.

Head, of Trade Division in the African Union Commission Mr Nadir Merah said in Dar es Salaam yesterday at the threeday-workshop that the initiative focuses at improving Africa’s competitiveness in the global economy.

“We need to fast track free trade areas as soon as possible. Towards end of January next year, we will present to the heads of the states the final paper on the initiative,” he said adding that the workshop seeks to discuss ways to improve communications and information systems on business and finance. Read more. Source | Daily News

COMESA member states urged to harmonize trade polices

Published on September 14, 2017

The Common Market for Eastern and Southern Africa (COMESA) secretary General, Sindiso Ngwenya has urged member states to fast track harmonisation of policies in the mining industry to make the sector more competitive and profitable.

According to Ngenya, the sector’s potential can only be sustainably harnessed through establishment of governance structures and leveraging on the existing multinational trade agreements.

Ngwenya told The New Times that sound institutional frameworks will enable COMESA’s national and sub-national governments to have a say in decisions regarding the use of the resources located in their territories including minerals if they harmonise policies regulating the sector. Read more. Source | New Times

NAEB moves to enforce coffee zoning strategy to achieve export targets

Published on September 14, 2017

The National Agriculture Exports Development Board (NAEB) has stepped up efforts to promote a new strategy it says will help the country achieve its targets in the coffee sub-sector.

The strategy, dubbed ‘coffee zoning’, seeks to strengthen the relationship between farmers, and coffee washing stations and factories.

Officials say increased interface between the farmers and their clients would help eliminate challenges that undermine efforts to ensure farmers produce quality coffee in high volumes. Read more. Source | New Times