What is the East African Community (EAC)?
The EAC is a regional intergovernmental organisation for Kenya, Uganda, Tanzania, Burundi, Rwanda. The treaty to establish the EAC was signed on 30 November 1999 and came into force on 7th July 2000.
What is the aim of the EAC?
The aim is to increase and strengthen cooperation among member states and other regional economic communities.
How is the EAC structured?
The EAC is structured into seven main organs: Summit, Council of Ministers, Co-ordinating Committee, Sectoral Committees, East African Court of Justice, East African Legislative Assembly and the Secretariat.
What are the achievements of the EAC?
- Uniform monetary and fiscal policies- This has included currency convertibility, banking rules and regulations, pre and post budget consultations and reading of budget statements on the same day.
- Promotion of tourism- States signed protocols to aid with the promotion of East Africa as a tourist destination to increase revenue earned from tourism. A single East Africa tourist visa has been available since 2014.
- Ease of cross country transport regulations – harmonisation of requirements for operation, licensing, customs and immigration.
- Improving education and skilled labour- With the aim to create high quality training and education to meet the need for skilled labour in the region, free visas are provided to students to study at universities within the community.
What are the failures of the EAC?
- Custom union- There has been a failure to advance the custom union which calls for common tariffs. Kenya for example has not completely eliminated charges on goods exported to Tanzania and Uganda.
- Monetary Union- The 2012 target to agree on the formation of a monetary union has not been fulfilled.
- Industrialisation- Due to poor infrastructural development and the failure for economies to attract commercially viable investments, it is difficult to tell whether the union has led to development.
- Imbalance- Countries have not equally benefited from the union. Kenya’s currency has for example appreciated while that of other member states has not.
Featured image– EAC | wikimedia commons
The views and opinions expressed in this article are those of the author and do not necessarily reflect the views of The Best of Africa.
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