Policy Advocacy

The East African Business Council (EABC) is a platform for businesses to contribute to the formulation of policies at the East African Community (EAC) level. Our ‘Observer Status’ at the East African Community enables us to participate and input into the negotiations and to hold regular and interactive dialogue with the EAC Secretariat, Council of Ministers and the Summit of Heads of State.

  Research for evidence-based advocacy on policy development and implementation

  High-level public-private dialogues with Ministers and Heads of State Inclusion of Private Sector positions in the EAC Policy formulations

  Joint formulation of Annual EABC Policy Advocacy Agenda

  Joint formulation of policy briefs and position papers on regional integration issues

  Industrial visits and case studies

  Direct Support & Intervention to business on trade concerns i.e. NTBs, trade & business restrictions inconsistent with EAC commitments/agreement

On policy advocacy front, the EABC Secretariat developed and presented EABC Policy Advocacy Agenda 2021/22 to EAC Council of Ministers and articulated private sector policy priorities to the EAC Sectoral Council on Trade, Industry, Finance and Investment (SCTIFI) held on 24th to 28th May 2021. EABC Secretariat also developed and submitted policy briefs to EAC Director General Customs and Trade and Trade Facilitation Institutions. These include Open Skies, EAC Common External Tariff, Admission of DRC into the EAC bloc, Excise duties, Breast Milk Substitute General regulations-2020, COMESA-SADC preferential treatment, EAC-UK negotiations, Double taxation, Standards and Technical Regulations.

COVID-19 pandemic has disrupted global supply chains and business operations, the EABC Secretariat in partnership with African Economic Consortium (AERC) and Bill and Melinda Gates Foundation, conducted 3 studies and rolled out Webinar on Trade & Investment Recovery amidst COVID-19 and the Impact of COVID-19 on Agriculture, Light Manufacturing, Tourism & Hospitality. The studies recommended for implementation of a regional coordinated approach on COVID-19 measures by the EAC Partner States.

The EABC Secretariat has been at the forefront of unlocking cross-border trade barriers. EABC Secretariat trained over 120 traders and policy experts from Business Membership Associations in Kenya, Rwanda, Burundi, Tanzania, Uganda on the World Trade Organization -Trade Facilitation Agreement and charted out an advocacy strategy for its implementation. In addition, the EABC Secretariat held Public-Private Dialogues with Trade Facilitation Agencies Borders of Namanga, Busia, Malaba, Holili/Taveta, Mutukula Kabanga, Rusumo, Elegu to unlock barriers impeding the free movement of cargo.

Other key achievements include: admission of the Democratic Republic of Congo into the EAC, Ratification of African Continental Free Trade Area Agreement, World Trade Organization Trade Facilitation Agreement, EAC Sanitary and Phytosanitary (SPS) Protocol by the EAC Partner States

The EABC Secretariat successfully resolved the following Non-Tariff Barriers:

  Standards-related NTB on petroleum jelly, issuance of work permit and reported issues on Uganda’s warning on synthetic colors under CODEX and RFDA registration processes requirement.

  Denial of preferential market access to Tanzania via Mutukula for Movit Product Uganda Limited.

  Denial of importation of Network Chips/Plugs manufactured by Simplify Network Limited by the Kenya Bureau of Standards

  Stoppage of 1000 tons of galvanized 32-gauge iron sheets manufactured by Roofing’s Limited by Tanzania Bureau of Standards (TBS)

  Denial of Import Permit Renewal for HMH – Rainbow Limited by Ministry of Agriculture and Livestock Kenya

  Delay in Release of Construction Crane – Safal Group by Rwanda

East African Business Council’s advocacy efforts successfully led to the establishment of a mechanism to monitor and report Non-Tariff Barriers in EAC, implementation of the  EAC Consultative Dialogue Forum, signing of the East African Code of Conduct for Business, Harmonization of over than 150 product Standards, harmonization of work permits & reduction of fees for East African Citizens, signing of Mutual Recognition Agreements (MRA) for Architects, engineers & accountants, among others achievements.

The East African Business Council in partnership with the East African Community created a formal dialogue channel dubbed “EAC-EABC Technical Working Group” tasked to resolve trade and investment barriers in the region. The Technical Working Group composes of members of national apex private sector associations in the EAC region and EAC technical officers. EAC-EABC Technical Working Group is chaired by the EAC Secretary General and co-chaired by EABC Chief Executive Officer. 

Aiming at improving regional policy advocacy initiatives, EABC with support from the Federation of German Industries (BDI) created a Technical Advocacy Coordination Team consisting of policy officers from EABC National Focal Points, sector associations and regional associations. The Technical Advocacy Coordination Team plans and formulates the EABC Annual Policy Advocacy Agenda and advocacy activities. 



UNCTAD World Investment Report 2024
July 5, 2024
EABC Policy Advocacy Priorities for 2024
July 4, 2024
Afreximbank’s Programmes, Products & Opportunities
July 5, 2024
EAC Gazette no 18 of 30th June, 2024 on approved measures for the Financial Year 2024/2025
July 1, 2024
June 25, 2024


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