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President Uhuru calls for East Africa links

Greater inter-connectivity of East African region will increase the ability of member states to trade with each other, President Uhuru Kenyatta has said.

He said better infrastructure would also boost competitiveness and attractiveness of the economies and countries of the region.

The President spoke in Kigali, Rwanda, during the 9th Northern Corridor Integration Summit that brought together host President Paul Kagame, Uganda’s Yoweri Museveni and South Sudan’s Salva Kiir.

EAC’s chair and Tanzania President Jakaya Kikwete, Burundi’s 2nd Vice-President Gervais Rufyikiri and Ethiopia’s Foreign Affairs Minister Tedros Adhanom attended as observers.

President Kenyatta won praise from Presidents Museveni, Kagame and Kiir for his reforms at the Mombasa Port, which has led to faster movement of goods through the vital Mombasa regional lifeblood.

CONGESTION AND DELAYS

President Kenyatta said EAC member countries’ efforts in eliminating congestion and delays in movement of goods and people would enable sharing of surplus milk and energy produced in Uganda and Tanzania, respectively, for regional prosperity.

“The impact of better infrastructure on all sectors of EAC nations’ economies is substantial. There is no need for outside import of goods and services produced within EAC,” President Kenyatta said.

He praised the consistency and determination of Heads of State, not only to the Northern Corridor Projects and EAC integration, but also to regular meetings.

“Every meeting we hold now takes our deliberation ahead without the need to reacquaint any of us with previous developments,” he said.

Host President Kagame welcomed the involvement of the private sector as a formal partner in implementation of the Northern Corridor initiative.