Thursday, 25th November, 2021, Nairobi, Kenya: Speaking during the East African Business Council -German African Business Association (Afrika Verein) Meeting, Mr. John Bosco Kalisa said, “the EAC bloc is open for investments from Germany.”
He explained that East African Business Council is committed to enhancing the partnership with the German African Business Association to boost trade and investment ties between the EAC bloc and Germany.
He said, “in 2020, EAC imports of goods from Germany hit USD.850million while exports to Germany hit USD.304 million, a 25% increase in comparison to 2019.”
On his part, EABC Chairman Emeritus, Vimal Shah called for more involvement East Africa companies driving the continental and international debates and agenda such as the European Business Council for Africa and EU-Africa Union Business Forum. Chairman Vimal Shah urged for the reignition of the Memorandum of Understanding between EABC and the German African Business Association to spur trade.
Dr. Markus Thill, Board Member of Afrika-Verein, and President Region Africa of Bosch called for harmonized policies to support the growth of the automotive sector in the EAC and adoption of common position on Rules of Origins at the African Continental Free Trade Area (AfCFTA) level. Dr. Markus urged for deeper analysis on the automotive value chains in East Africa to attract more investors into the sector.
Mrs. Mary Ngechu, EABC Board Director urged for capacity building on certification for value added products by SMEs in East Africa to ease access the German and EU market and boost manufacturing in the region.
Ms. Sarah Reynolds from Merck Group urged the EAC Partner States to forge partnerships on distribution agreements, local procurement and advance market commitments to lure investments in the vaccine industry. She explained that access to EAC Common Market of 177 million underpins the growth and sustainability of vaccine industries and investment.
Mrs. Emily Waita, EABC Board Director urged for collaboration between East African and German companies on lessons & best practices on circular economy and innovative climate mitigation solutions.
Mr. John Bosco Rusagara said there is high political goodwill from the EAC Head of State to ease doing business in the region. He explained that EAC Secretariat has made remarkable progress on the admission of Democratic Republic of Congo into the EAC bloc and the EAC Common External Tariff Review process is likely finalized in the upcoming Summit of the EAC Heads of State.
EAC’s top exports to Germany include Coffee, tea, maté and spices, flowers, edible fruits, precious metals, petroleum oils and industrial or medicinal plants while imports include: machinery, vehicles, pharmaceuticals, measuring instruments and electrical parts.
EABC and German African Business Association agreed to collaborate on Manufacturing, Healthcare and Pharmaceutical, Energy, Mobility & Infrastructure and Trade Mission to East Africa and Germany.
The meeting was also attended by Christoph Kannengiesser, CEO of Afrika-Verein, Egon Kochanke (Amb.Rtd.), Senior Diplomatic Advisor of Afrika-Verein, Serge Kamuhinda, CEO of Volkswagen Rwanda, Sophie Odupoy, EABC Member & Head of Public Affairs Koko Networks, Stephan Luyt from Siemens (Pty) Ltd East Africa, Asmau Nitardy from Afrika-Verein and Ghislain Noumbessy Head of West and East Africa, Bosch.