Friday, 22nd July 2022 Arusha, Tanzania:- Mr. Jaswinder Bedi, EBS, MBS, EABC Vice Chairman urged the EAC Partner States to set clear timelines for the attainment of a fully-fledged Common Market.
Speaking at the EABC-TMEA Private Sector Pre Heads of State Meeting, Vice Chairman Jaswinder Bedi elaborated that Non- Tariff Barriers, the delayed establishment of the EAC Committee on Trade Remedies, work permits, re-testing of product standards, restrictive Bilateral Air Service Agreements continue to curtail the free movement of goods, services, service suppliers, workers, capital, persons as well as rights of establishment and residence.
He further expounded that the EAC Partner States should liberalize the Construction, Environment, Health-related &Social, Recreational, Culture & Sporting services as outlined in their commitment. The Chief Guest, Simon Kiprono Chelugui, Cabinet Secretary, Ministry of Labour- Republic of Kenya stated labour is an important factor of production and reiterated the deep commitment of the Government of the Republic of Kenya toward creating a favorable business environment and free movement of labour and skills.
Dr. James Mwangi, CBS, Group CEO of Equity Group Holdings, called for the adoption and implementation of common laws by the EAC Partner States.
He urged the private sector to collaborate and innovate as EAC region is endowed with ample resources and has the capability to reset production and trade of needed commodities to mitigate the disruptions of the Russia- Ukraine conflict.
Mr. John Bosco Kalisa said high transport costs across the central and northern corridors impact the competitiveness of the EAC bloc.
Mr. Kalisa also urged Tanzania and Burundi to join the One Network Area for Telecommunication and EAC single tourist visa in order to promote EAC as a single tourist destination.
Business leaders decried that unharmonized domestic taxes create an unleveled playing field in the EAC region.
EABC-TMEA Private Sector Pre Heads of State Meeting convened Dr. Vimal Shah, EABC Chairman Emeritus, Hon. Olivier Suguru, MP& President of CFCIB, H.E. Amb. Manfredo Fanti, Head of the European Union Delegation to Tanzania and to the EAC, H.E. Muhammad Saleem, Pakistan High Commissioner to Tanzania, Mr. Simon Kaheru, EABC Vice Chair, Mr. Muzaneza Antoine, EABC Vice Chair, EABC Board Directors, Officials from EAC Secretariat, EABC Members and business leaders from across East Africa to jointly develop a memorandum of policy priorities to be presented to the upcoming EAC Heads of State Summit.