The forum seeks to create an avenue for the private sector to advocate and campaign for the acceleration of industrial reforms aimed at improvement of investment conditions in the EAC strategic sectors. The EAC region has already identified strategic areas for industrial development in the region that bear comparative advantages and where significant private sector investment is needed to unlock potentials. These strategic sectors include: agro-processing and agri-business; mineral processing; pharmaceuticals; construction materials; fertilizers & agro-chemicals as well as the strengthened leather & textiles and automotive sector.
The private sector is expected to play the lead role in the development and investment in these priority sectors. There is a need therefore to develop strategic partnership and promote dialogue so as to identify the current binding constraints to investment in these sectors, and propose solutions to improve the environment for manufacturing.
Adding the view angle of the / towards the East African diaspora provides for the fact that there are additional extraordinary opportunities for investment and the benefits of attracting this special group as possible investors in the region.
The 2nd East African Manufacturing Business Summit will provide stage for discussion on cross cutting issues related to manufacturing specifically:
- Local Content
- Financing for Manufacturing
- Standards and quality management,
- Industrial skills for Manufacturing Technology & Innovation
- Combatting Illicit Trade, Product Piracy & Intellectual Property Violations
- Attracting Diaspora Investment in the Manufacturing Sector.
Indeed, boosting value addition can create more jobs opportunities for EAC citizens for instance only 15% of cotton in East African countries is processed locally; these are some of the expected issues that stakeholders will talk over during the industry round table in bid to boost the manufacturing value chains addition. Industry Round Table will focus on:
- Automotive Industry
- Pharmaceutical & Cosmetics
- Mining, Cement, Iron & Steel
- Chemicals, Plastics & Paints
- Agro-processing & Agri-business
- Leather and Footwear
- Cotton, Textiles and Apparels
The 2nd East African Manufacturing Business Summit will embed an exhibition where investors, enterprises, researchers and academia can collectively showcase new products and services as well as latest innovations in manufacturing, particularly those with relevance to small and medium enterprises (SMEs). Official opening ceremony is expected to be graced by H.E. Paul Kagame, President of the Republic of Rwanda. In addition, Hon. Liberat Mfumukeko, Secretary General of the EAC as well as the respective Ministers from all EAC Partner States shall engage the private sector on critical steps needed to leverage higher levels of investment in manufacturing.
Business all over the world are welcomed to influence policy and campaign for the acceleration of industrial reforms to improve the Manufacturing Business Environment and Investment conditions in EAC strategic Industries. The Summit recommendations shall be cumulated into position papers that will guide further advocacy activities aimed to hasten realization of an industrialized East African economy by 2032.