What it means DR Congo being admitted to EA Community
The Democratic Republic of Congo (DRC) will officially be admitted to the East Africa Community (EAC), adding a 90 million market population for the regional trading bloc.
The mineral-rich country has already established trade ties with most of the EAC member states through bilateral deals and at multilateral levels
The EAC secretary-general Dr. Peter Mathuki, in a letter to ministers in charge of the EAC docket, confirmed that the heads of state would approve the admission on March 29, 2022.
He stated that they are in receipt of a letter dated March 18 from the chairperson of the council of ministers informing the secretariat of the organizing of an extraordinary summit on the admission of the DRC into the EAC
“The summit will be preceded by the 48th Extraordinary meeting of the Council of Ministers on Friday 25th March. The proposed agenda for the summit will be the consideration of the report of the council on the admission of DRC into the EAC.” said Dr Mathuki.
President Uhuru Kenyatta, who is the current chair of the EAC, is expected to preside over the summit that also includes President Samia Suluhu Hassan (Tanzania), Yoweri Kaguta Museveni (Uganda) Paul Kagame (Rwanda), Evariste Ndayishimiye (Burundi) and Salva Kiir of South Sudan.
What it means?
The EAC has a population of 193 million people. The entrance of the DRC would bring the total population to 280 million people, spanning the Indian and Atlantic Oceans. This vast market will help everyone since the DRC will be able to readily buy and sell to the rest of East Africa, which will benefit its people.
Harnessing idle resources is a realistic option with no negative consequences for the DRC or the region. A power dam at Inga, for example, would provide 60,000MW of clean, renewable energy and put an end to the discussions and headaches over whether or not to build hydroelectric dams in East Africa.
The mineral resources of DRC and the wider EAC market would make rapid industrialisation of the Congo possible, with skilled manpower from the region also available as a local resource.