Fifty three offices established by private equity and venture capital companies in the East African Community (EAC) countries which comprises a cumulative minimum value of at least $5.8 billion USD under management for investments throughout the world including in East Africa. This is according to “The Map of Private Equity Firms” based in Sub-Saharan Africa by Africa’s leading private company research firm, Asoko Insight from December 2018. Read more. Source | The Exchange
Africa is the youngest continent in the world with almost 200 million people aged 15-24, and this number is expected to double by 2045. However, unemployment among East African youth is already high, at an estimated 51-57%. With a rising youth population and unemployment rate, young people are turning to entrepreneurship as both a means to generating income and jobs. 79 of every 100 jobs created by young entrepreneurs in East Africa have been for youth aged 18-34, however only 17% of entrepreneurs on the continent believe they will create a medium to high number of jobs over the next five years. Read more. Source| The Exchange
Rwanda’s Private Sector Federation (PSF) has challenged regional legislators to increase their advocacy for policies designated to eliminate trade barriers, which continue to undermine regional integration. Officials from the umbrella of Rwandan business community were yesterday meeting members of the East African Legislative Assembly (EALA) who are undertaking an outreach programme in partner states. Read more. Source | New Times
The chief executive of the East African Business Council Peter Mathuki spoke with Patty Magubira on the region’s economic prospects for 2019. With regards to challenges the East Africa Community faced in 2018, he outlined that most of them were compounded by protectionist approaches that hindered trade within the East African Community.
"EAC intra-trade stood at only 20 per cent of the total, compared with 46 per cent in the Southern African Development Community, and 67 per cent in the European Union. We have partly implemented the Common Market Protocol, which helped the EAC become the fastest growing regional economic bloc," he said. Read more. Source | East African
On June 22, Burundi’s National Assembly adopted draft law on the ratification of the East African Community Protocol on Sanitary and Phytosanitary (SPS) Measures (EAC SPS Protocol) pursuant to Section 8 of the Treaty Making and Ratification Act, 2012, essentially signaling the country’s approval of EAC SPS Protocol. This follows a high-level awareness raising meeting convened by the Hub in March 2017, in partnership with the Burundi Bureau of Standards and Quality Control (BBN). The meeting specifically aimed at raising awareness on EAC SPS Protocol and the need to support and fast track its ratification in the country. (Please also refer to this link: http://www.assemblee.bi/Analyse-et-adoption-du-Projet-de,1525 – note that it is in French)
The protocol harmonizes regional measures that align the EAC Partner States with each other and with global markets, ensuring easier trade. The measures seek to protect human and animal life from risks arising from additives, contaminants, toxins or disease causing organisms in their food. The measures, which also take into account plant life, seek to mitigate damage to a country from the entry, establishment or spread of pests, diseases or disease causing elements. The EAC SPS Protocol is expected to promote trade in food and agricultural commodities and strengthen the application of a harmonized approach for implementation of SPS measures and activities.
With the Parliaments ratification, the next stage will be to forward the protocol’s instruments of operation to the Ministry responsible for EAC affairs, and then to the EAC Secretariat. Burundi now joins Kenya, Rwanda and Uganda as the EAC Partner States that have ratified the SPS Protocol. Next steps for the Hub include supporting Tanzania to ratify the EAC Protocol on SPS.
Burundi Members of Parliament agreed to push for ratification of the East African Community (EAC) Sanitary and Phytosanitary (SPS) Protocol following a Hub-supported awareness workshop. Burundi and Tanzania are the only remaining EAC countries that have yet to ratify the Protocol. Ratification of the EAC SPS Protocol by all the EAC partner states will pave the way for domestication of the Protocol, including the drafting of harmonized regulations based on the EAC SPS Bill covering plant health, animal health and food safety. Harmonized SPS regulations among the EAC Partner States will contribute to greater intra-EAC and international trade.
The Hub conducted the SPS Protocol awareness-raising workshop in collaboration with the Burundi Bureau of Standards and Quality Control. High-ranking government officials, including two Cabinet Ministers, four members of Parliament (including the President of the Committee on agriculture and livestock) and Senate, representatives of competent authorities responsible for plant health, animal health and food safety, private sector and the academia attended. Workshop facilitators outlined what participants have to gain by ratifying the SPS Protocol, including:
- Better food safety measures
- Improved plant protection and animal health.
- Enhanced risk mitigation arising from pest, pests, diseases and food safety concerns e.g. aflatoxins
- Improved competitiveness of the produce originating from the EAC region to external markets, such as the European Union
- Stronger coordination of institutional frameworks for enforcing of SPS measures within the EAC region.
Forty-Six Postharvest Technology Innovators from East Africa to Compete for USD 30,000 in Seed Capital
Panelists for the East Africa Postharvest Technologies Competition 2017 have selected 46 innovators, from over 200 applicants, to undergo accelerator training on how to package and pitch their technologies to investors. The training will help the innovators expand their opportunities for scaling up and disseminating their technologies to a wider market. The training will take place in Tanzania on April 4-6, 2017.
Applicants are competing for the best technological solutions to address post-harvest losses. They hail from Kenya, Uganda, Tanzania, Rwanda and Burundi.
The Inter Region Economic Network (IREN) is conducting the inaugural East Africa Postharvest Technologies Competition 2017 through a grant from the Hub. The objective is to spur the development of innovative technologies that reduce food loss and waste in Africa.Read more
The monthly 'Common Market Implementation Update' tracks legal and regulatory developments that have a bearing on Kenya’s compliance with commitments made towards the East African Community' Common Market Protocol (CMP).
This issue covers key milestones taken by the Republic of Kenya to advance implementation of the Protocol. On June 29 2016, Kenya approved the ratification of the EAC Protocol on Sanitary and Phytosanitary Measures.
The January 2016 edition of Global Economic Prospects discusses current global and regional economic developments and prospects, analyzing key challenges and opportunities confronting developing countries. It also highlights spillovers from large emerging markets and macroeconomic vulnerabilities during resource development.
Biannually (January and June), it examines global economic developments and prospects, with a special focus on developing countries, as well as analysis of topical policy challenges faced by developing countries through in-depth research detailed in this edition.
The WTO World Trade Report focuses on the benefits of the WTO Trade Facilitation Agreement (TFA), which was agreed by WTO members at the Ministerial Conference in Bali in December 2013. The 2015 World Trade Report is the first detailed study of the potential impacts of the TFA based on a full analysis of the final agreement text.
The WTO has also published a companion app (on iTunes, Android, and Amazon app stores) to the report. The app includes the full text of the Report plus the underlying data for all charts and tables in the Report. It also contains a video and photos of the launch event.