The signing of the African Continental Free-Trade Area (AfCFTA) on March 21 in Kigali by 44 countries represented a milestone towards achieving the long-standing goal of creating a unified African market. Yet we are only halfway there, for a number of reasons.
First, there is a need to achieve 22 ratifications by March 2019 for the agreement to go into force — and so far, only seven countries have done so. Read more. Source | East African
The United Nations Economic Commission for Africa (UNECA) on Monday urged the East African Community (EAC) to liberalise trade in professional services in order to spur growth of the manufacturing sector.
Stephen Karingi, the Director of Capacity Development Division said in Nairobi that the region’s manufacturing sector is not as competitive as it should be due to relatively high cost of services including in the insurance, legal, logistic and finance sectors. Read more. Source | New Times
EGM Securities, Kenya’s first and only regulated non-dealing online forex broker, has launched the region’s first online forex trading offering in Kenya that enables trading using multiple payment channels including mobile payment channels such as M-Pesa.
This innovative financial offering bolsters Kenya’s positioning as a leader in financial innovation in Africa. For the first time, Kenyans will have the opportunity to participate in global forex markets in a strictly locally regulated environment and at lower transaction costs. Read more. Source | Global Banking and Finance Review
East Africa has enjoyed stronger and more resilient economic growth than the other regions in Africa, at over 4 per cent per year since 1990, a new report shows.
A new joint report by the African Union Commission (AUC) and Organisation for Economic Co-operation and Development (OECD) shows that East Africa and West Africa managed to reduce extreme poverty by 23 and 12 percentage points respectively between 1990 and 2013. Read more. Source | New Times
East African countries are performing well in economies, the bloc now becoming the fastest growing in the continent. A report released by the United Nations Conference on Trade and Development (UNCTAD) and made available by the East African Business Council (EABC) indicated that the region received 7.6 billion US dollars in Foreign Direct Investment (FDI) last year. Read more. Source | Daily News
East African ministers responsible for regional affairs on Monday praised Kenya’s Chinese-built Standard Gauge Railway (SGR), saying it has not only helped ease the cost of doing business in the region but also set an example on the transformation an investment of that nature can bring about.
John Luk Jok, the South Sudan Minister of Transport and Roads, said there is great progress in the Northern Corridor improvement process, noting that the issue of financing however remains the biggest challenge. Read more. Source | New Times
Nairobi will next week play host to East Africa’s largest convention on Private Equity, providing a platform to unpack the opportunities in the region, while addressing common challenges and solutions in the market.
The fourth annual-Private Equity in East Africa Conference will bring together over 250 delegates from around the globe. The conference is being facilitated by the East Africa Private Equity and Venture Capital Association (EAVCA). Read more. Source | The Exchange
East African Community has continued to realize significant growth and development even though there have been mixed results, EAC Chairperson of the Council of Ministers has said.
According to the Second Deputy Prime Minister, of Uganda, Dr Ali Kirunda Kivenjija, EAC region maintained its position as the fastest-growing sub-region in Africa, with estimated growth of 4.6 % in 2017, up from 4.4 % in 2016. Read more. Source | The Exchange
East African countries could lead the world in growth in consumption of tea during the next decade, even as they occupy top positions in exports of the commodity. Estimates by the Food and Agricultural Organisation show that Rwanda will lead in growth at nine per cent followed by Uganda at five per cent and Kenya at 4.4 per cent. Read more. Source | East African
The East African Community is pushing for an amendment to the Customs Management Act to allow Customs officials to get advance information regarding goods being moved across national borders ahead of their arrival on carrier vessel.This would enable Customs officials to detect high-risk consignments and take appropriate action, and expedite clearance of legitimate cargo. Read more. Source | East African