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British Envoy Warns EAC Against Misusing Donor Funds

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pilule http://christchurchcathedral.org.au/wp-includes/rewrite.php geneva;”>Amb. Sezibera reaffirmed the Community’s great faith in the pivotal and catalytic role of the Development Partners, malady http://ciprs.cusat.ac.in/wp-includes/post.php particularly through the EAC Partnership Fund in the development of the regional programme.

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He informed the ambassadors that the performance of the Partnership Fund for the FY 2011/2012 reflects significant impact on the overall regional programme and that the Fund’s contribution which rose from US$ 640,920 in 2006/07 to US$ 6.1 Million in 2011/12 was effectively applied to the implementation of the earmarked projects in the critical areas of the Common Market, Customs and Trade; negotiations of the East African Monetary Union; sensitization and outreach; and support to key EAC sectors (including education, culture and labour; gender and community development; governance, agriculture and tourism; infrastructure development; and capacity strengthening of the EAC.

The Secretary General briefed the Development Partners on the current status of the regional integration process that touched on all the pillars of the integration including the possible expansion of the Community.

Amb. Sezibera disclosed that the resource requirements to deliver the 4th EAC Development Strategy were in the region of US$ 1.3 billion over the 5-year period of the Strategy and that it was important to bring on board the Development Partners in the resource mobilization.

He said the efforts and milestones so far being made with steady growth of intra-EAC trade and international trade as well as direct foreign investments inflows and the momentum gathered for the social and economic transformation of East Africa should be maintained and requires massive effort to marshal the resources and contribution of the public and private sectors, civil society and the development partners in the regional integration and development effort.

At the dialogue, the British High Commissioner to the United Republic of Tanzania H.E Diane Corner took over the Chair of the EAC Development Partners (Partnership Fund) from Amb. Klaus Peter Brandes of the Embassy of the Federal Republic of Germany in the United Republic of Tanzania.

In his handover remarks, the German Ambassador, who was represented by Ms. Gisela Habel, the Head of Cooperation at the Embassy reaffirmed the commitment of the Development Partners in the regional integration process.

The Ambassador congratulated the Secretary General for spearheading the regional integration process with commendable results and noted that the concept paper for the high level dialogue that had been developed will underpin exchange of information and deepen dialogue between EAC and the Development Partners in order to jointly support the achievement of the Customs Union, the Common Market, the Monetary Union, and eventually the Political Federation.

The German Ambassador noted that EAC was a vibrant regional economic community on the continent and as such there was need to secure continuous engagement of Development Partners in the support of regional integration.

“Development Partners had a fair interest in seeing their financial contributions bear fruit through closer integration, and the creation of a conducive environment for economic development supported by stability, peace and security in the region”.

EAC WARNED ON DONOR FUNDS MISUSE

The British High Commissioner HE Diane Corner highlighted the outstanding progress in the EAC integration that include the significant increase in intra-regional trade since 2005; monetary union and political federation being high on the agenda; the move to establish a Tripartite Free Trade Area involving the EAC, SADC, and COMESA by 2014; as well as the Continental FTA by 2017 as adopted by the African Union.

Ms Diane Corner noted that all these were ambitious goals that signal significant political backing to push regional integration higher up the agenda.

The British Envoy affirmed that the UK remains committed to support the regional agenda through UK’s Africa Free Trade Initiative, which supports a wide range of trade facilitation initiatives across Africa.

Ms Corner cautioned the Community against misuse of funds from the Development Fund saying “there is much greater scrutiny and challenge around the use of taxpayers’ money for aid programmes these days and for this reason, we are pleased that the Secretary General has introduced, and will continue to pursue, much greater focus on results within EAC programmes and a heavy emphasis on value for money”.

The EAC Secretariat and the Development Partners signed a formal agreement on a regular High Level Dialogue.

The EAC Partnership Fund was established in September 2006, as a basket pool to enhance donor coordination in support to the regional projects and programmes through the EAC Secretariat.

The main objective of the Fund is to enhance regional integration and socio-economic development of the EAC and facilitate harmonization and alignment of Development Partner’s support to EAC.

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