EAST African Community countries need to engage the private sector when formulating business laws and regulations to accelerate integration under the bloc’s common market protocol, President Uhuru Kenyatta has said.
He said such consultations will help better the region’s business environment, helping firms thrive and spark faster economic growth.
Speaking during a business forum on his three-day state visit to west-neighbouring Uganda that ends today, Uhuru however emphasised that companies need to become more innovative and competitive to remain relevant in a highly globalising market.
The president held bilateral talks with his host, President Yoweri Museveni on Saturday, focusing on security, anti-terrorism, trade and investment.
In a statement to newsrooms yesterday, the Presidential Strategic Communications Unit said the two countries are working on a framework to forge increased collaboration of companies. This will hel;p take advantage of the proposed 700-million people tripartite market bringing together EAC, Comesa and Southern Africa Development Community 26 member countries.
The framework will be coordinated by the Kenya National Chamber of Commerce and its counterpart in Uganda, guided by a memorandum of understanding that the two have signed.
Uganda remain’s Kenya’s largest trading partners with trade volumes of Sh88.88 billion ($880 million) last year, including Sh70.7 billion($700 million) in exports and Sh18.18 billiin in imports($180 million) in imports.
“Last year, in keeping with our recent history, the volume of trade between us made Uganda one of Kenya’s most vital trading partners,” Museveni said.