Today, East African countries integration efforts are at a crucial juncture. The region is facing a complex web of closely interlinked and overlapping trade integration opportunities at the multilateral, regional and bilateral level, with a variety of partners. On the one hand, efforts towards increased convergence among existing regional integration process such as EAC, SADC and COMESA in the context of the TFTA and subsequently the CFTA initiative, raise significant complexities but also an enormous potential to unleash major economic gains.
On the other hand, East Africa is developing significant trade and investment relationships with rapidly growing emerging economies such as India or China. The region also maintains close links with large traditional trading partners albeit through somehow more asymmetrical relations. Finally, East Africa needs to position itself vis-à-vis recent trends towards the negotiations of so-called mega-regional initiatives outside the continent such as the TPP, TTIP or RCEP.
This event will provide a space for an open and interactive dialogue among key stakeholders including policymakers, experts, private sector actors and representatives from IGOs and RECs on the opportunities that enhanced trade integration, at the regional, continental, and global levels, can bring in terms of achieving of sustainable development objectives in East Africa.
Read more about the conference in the concept note.
ECDPM’s Francis Osiemo Omesa made a presentation to the conference.