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- EAC Partner States need to fast-track implementation regulations on the liberalisation of air transport
- An extra 155,000 jobs and US$1.3 billion in annual GDP would be created if 12 countries opened their skies.
- Africa has formed the Single African Air Transport Market (SAATM) to spearhead a single unified air transport market to advance the liberalization of civil aviation in Africa.
In the spirit of creating a single market and increased integration of Africa’s 54 nations, stakeholders want airlines operating within the continent to lower fares.
Recent research by the International Air Transport Association (IATA) showed that ‘if just 12 key Africa countries opened their markets and increased connectivity, an extra 155,000 jobs and US$1.3 billion in annual GDP would be created in those countries.’
These are significant figures by any measure and IATA, the trade association for the world's airlines, representing some 260 members, maintains that lowering flight prices in…
- For over a decade, the East Africa single tourist visa programme has been discussed and proposed by EAC governments.
- Rwanda maintains that the East Africa single tourist visa will help market the entire region as a single tourist destination.
- The response from Tanzania is promising compared to the non-committal stance in previous engagements.
Buy a visa to Rwanda and get to visit all of Tanzania’s and Kenya’s tourist attractions. In fact, with that single visa you can tour all the 7 countries of East Africa. This is what the East Africa single tourist visa programme proposes.
Tanzania is home to some of the World’s most revered tourist attractions; the likes of the highest mountain in Africa, The Kilimanjaro; the Serengeti, home to the world’s largest wildebeest migration and the Ngorongoro crater, where visitors can see the world’s only known tree climbing lions and deemed the 8th wonder of the …
Tanzania is planning to increase its production of coal by more than three million tonnes annually as it rumps up its drive towards clean energy.
The country made its plans public at the start of the year through the Tanzania Mining Commission (TMC) which announced that the country has already increased it coal output from 1.5 million tonnes in the 2020/21 period to 1.56 million tonnes by the second half of this financial year 2022/23.
TMC Executive Secretary, Engineer Yahya Samamba, said Tanzania earned 211 million US dollars from the 2020/21 production of 1.5 million tones. He also made it clear that majority of this output was for export with more than 800,000 tonnes for the export market and a little over 60,000 tonnes consumed locally.
Notably, Tanzania’s coal is exported largely to India, Poland and the
World trade is increasingly relying on new technologies to meet demand and Asia is likely to take centre stage in the future of global trade.
Analysts predict Southeast Asia will be the world’s busiest trade area by trade volume.
The International Monetary Fund (IMF) reports that billions of dollars are already been invested in warehouses and distribution centers across with ports investing in automated vehicles and cranes to increase efficiency and cut costs in the long term.
Trade in the modern world is global. Flow of goods, services, capital, people and data connects us all. Value chains of even the smallest of daily consumer products are global. Raw, a raw material from Africa is developed in Asia and consumed in the Americas -, that is the modern world and countries that wish to be competitive must adopt.
However, this view of a ‘world village’ is changing, in the wake
Africa is huge continent with untapped potential. With the rest of the world opening up for the best international trade and travel relations, Africa is learning and following the same path, with countries such as Uganda, Kenya and Rwanda easing entry restrictions by issuing visa on arrival and hence turning themselves towards open borders opportunities as members of the East African Community (EAC).
Unrestricted movement of people and goods between African countries holds the key to unlocking this trade potential. That is why trade analysts are touting the African Continent Free Trade Area (AfCTA) as a game changer in inter-Africa trade.
According to United Nations Conference on Trade and Development (UNCTAD), Intra-African trade is currently low at 14.4 percent of total African exports. UNCTAD estimates that the AfCFTA could boost intra-African trade by about 33 percent and cut the continent’s trade deficit by 51 percent.
The possibility of more open
Should a common currency in the EAC come to fruition, the trade will be fueled by a reduction, albeit limited, in transaction costs, the elimination of exchange rate risk and region-wide price harmonisation – all of which will undoubtedly be underpinned by policy incentives.
- Monetary Union is the third stage towards EAC regional integration, capped through Political Federation.
- Considering individual economies are relatively small, currency harmonisation might play a significant role in improving intra-African trade.
- The IMF, through its chief Christine Lagarde, previously warned the EAC not to rush into a currency union, pointing to the issues faced in Europe.
Interest in regional integration, including monetary, in Africa has remained intense over the decades since independence. Consequently, various regional groupings have been formed. Those initiatives were stimulated by the generally small size of individual economies. This led to a desire to promote economies of scale in production and distribution. A…
After introducing the EAC tourist visa, East Africa has been cited as one of the most open destinations alongside South East Asia and Oceania.
In contrast, North America, Central Africa and North Africa remain the most restrictive regions.
This is according to the report by World Travel Tourism Council (WTTC) which also states that despite improvements, traditional visa policies remain an obstacle to both tourism and economic growth.
East Africa has made huge strides in improving the tourism sector in the bloc. So far, three countries have embraced the Single Tourist visa making it easier for the bloc to market it as a single destination as well as allowing tourists access to all three countries from one visa.
The single tourist visa was introduced in 2014 as a pilot between Kenya, Uganda, and Rwanda. Under the initiative, tourists can choose between a single-country visa or an EAC tourist visa. With …
Road infrastructure stimulates trade.
According to a World Bank report titled ‘How does infrastructure support international trade?’ global trade has contributed to economic growth and poverty reduction in the past three decades ‘ so transport infrastructure stimulates trade which brings about economic growth and reduces poverty.
To better share the gains of trade, more road infrastructures are needed to connect better regions of a country and countries in a given area as well that is the basis to improving intra-African trade.
However, high transport costs continue to hinder regional integration since large-scale transport infrastructure investments require huge investments. However, once set up, road infrastructure can ‘reduce transport costs both within countries and to other countries, increasing internal as well as external trade integration,’ reads the report in part.
- World Bank emphasizes investment in transport infrastructure
- EAC invests in new bypass road to connect bloc
- Trade growth along road infrastructure speeding
The Democratic Republic of the Congo (DRC) joined the East African Community (EAC) in March 2022 in a development that has been largely feted as positive.
This decision was reached by the heads of state of the other member countries. The BBC in a report that covered the development said that although the country had officially become a member of the regional bloc, not much would change right away. This is because at that time in March 2022 Congolese lawmakers still had to ratify the decision.
The report added that Congolese citizens looking to travel to other member countries of the East African Community had to wait a little while longer. The BBC gave the example of South Sudan which took four months to become a fully-fledged member in 2016.
- DRC recently joined the EAC which is a move expected to help the country realize its mineral potential through regional