KAMPALA - THE Deputy Secretary General of the East African Community (EAC) in charge of Planning and Infrastructure, Alloys Mutabingwa, has reiterated the need to have a strong trading bloc that will compete favourably on the international scene.
Mutabingwa made the remarks yesterday during a media breakfast organized ahead of the 3rd EAC Investment Conference which kicks off on Wednesday this week.
“It’s important that we look at the whole world and know where to position ourselves. We should have our fair market share and this can be done when we are counted as one entity for business and investment purposes,” he said.
This year’s conference will be held under the theme; ‘EAC Common Market: The preferred investment destination for expanded opportunities.’
The EAC official told reporters that ever since the regional bloc started organizing investment conferences there has been growth in trade, and movement of goods and services.
Flanked by the EAC Principal Public Relations Officer, Richard Owora Othieno, Mutabingwa said that the total foreign direct investments had increased to having one of the partner states registering USD800million.
“Ever since we started this process, so many business entities have adopted this name ‘East Africa’. It gives us the impression that they are looking at East Africa as a market for all,” he added.
Officials in charge of investment from all the five partner states are currently meeting in Kampala as part of efforts of organizing the regional conference expected to attract 2,000 delegates.
The EAC is made up of 130 million people with a combined gross domestic product of USD73 billion.