KIGALI - The Minister of the East African Community Affairs ((MINEAC), Monique Mukaruliza, has called upon heads of public and private institutions to play an active role in facilitating Rwanda’s integration in the East African Community Common Market.
Mukaruliza made the call yesterday during a workshop organized by her Ministry and attended by various private and public officials in the country.
“One of the major components of the EAC Customs Unions is free movement of goods, labour, services and capital, among others, so it’s high time you collaborated with our Ministry to maximize the opportunities” Mukaruliza said.
She also briefed the participants on the structure of the EAC while Robert Ssali, the Permanent Secretary of the Ministry, briefed them on the Common Market.
Ssali said that the free movement of goods between partner states is governed by the customs law of the Community as specified in article 39 of the Protocol on the establishment of the EAC Customs Union.
“I call upon you as concerned individuals to put in place more strategies on how best Rwanda can position itself in order to get more benefits from the EAC Common Market” Ssali said.
He added that some of the challenges the country still faces include the low level of awareness on opportunities offered by the Common Market, and the agenda of the integration process.
Ssali revealed that there is also lack of competitiveness among the business community in the country, stiff competition for local employees as a result of free movement of labour, harmonization of national laws and policies.
However, he noted that EAC partner states have started the process of harmonizing their national laws, policies and systems to allow smooth implementation of the Common Market Protocol adding that they will adopt measures to address imbalances amongst themselves.