The Japanese Ambassador to Tanzania and Representative to the East African Community (EAC), Hiroshi Nakagawa yesterday paid a courtesy call on the EAC Secretary General, Dr. Richard Sezibera at his office in Arusha, Tanzania.
The Japanese Ambassador re-affirmed his country’s commitment to support the EAC integration process, especially in the area of infrastructural development.
Nakagawa emphasised the importance of facilitating regional infrastructure.
He expressed Japan’s satisfaction with the assistance extended to the region, especially in regard to transport corridor studies; implementation of trade facilitation instruments; harmonisation of axle load, One-stop border posts and integrated border management system.
“Japan is ready to continue its close cooperation with the EAC Secretariat through the Japan International Cooperation Agency (JICA), as well as contribution to the EAC Partnership Fund,” Nakagwa affirmed.
Sezibera assured the Japanese envoy of his commitment to strengthen the relationship between EAC and Japan, and expressed gratitude for the financial and technical assistance rendered to the EAC by the Japanese government.
“The Japanese government has maintained commitment and support to the EAC integration agenda even at this critical hour when the country is emerging from a ferocious tsunami, spawned by one of the largest earthquakes ever recorded,” Sezibera said.
The Secretary General briefed the Ambassador on strategic areas that will dominate the Community’s agenda in the next five years.
These include among others; strengthening the operations of the EAC Customs Union, implementing the EAC Common Market Protocol; concluding the negotiations of the EAC Monetary Union; building a robust regional infrastructure - especially roads, railways, ports and harbors, and energy - and involving the people of the bloc in the integration process.