East African Community (EAC)

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7 July 2000, on entry into force of East African Cooperation Treaty - the 'Treaty for the establishment of the East African Community' - signed 30 Nov 1999, Arusha (Tanzania UR). Formally launched 15 Jan 2001. Establishment followed the work of the Commission for East African Cooperation (CEAC), set up 14 Mar 1996, Arusha (Tanzania UR), on signature of a cooperation agreement by Presidents of Kenya, Tanzania UR and Uganda, following preparatory work begun after signature of a Treaty, Nov 1993, by the countries involved. The Commission was also referred to as: Permanent Tripartite Commission Secretariat on East African Cooperation; Secretariat of the Commission for East African Cooperation (EAC Secretariat). The preparatory East African Cooperation, 1993-2000, revitalized previous formal cooperation among the 3 countries, which was suspended in 1977 with the disintegration of East African Community - 1967 (EAC); this had been set up, 1 Dec 1967, to replace East African Common Services Organization (EACSO), formed 9 Dec 1961, which in its turn took over the activities of East African High Commission (EAHC), set up 1 Jan 1948. During the period 1977-1993, member states signed a 'Mediation Agreement for the Division of Assets and Liabilities', 1984, which paved the way for future cooperation. The Community aims ultimately to achieve a Political Federation of East African States. In this regard, the Protocol on the Establishment of East African Community Customs Union (EACCU) was signed Mar 2004.


Widen and deepen cooperation among partner states in political, economic, social, cultural, health, education, science and technology, defence, security, legal and judicial areas, for their mutual benefit; to this end, establish a customs union as entry point, a common market, subsequently a monetary union and ultimately a political federation. Achieve these goals by: promoting sustainable growth and equitable development of partner states, including rational utilization of the region's natural resources and protection of the environment; strengthening and consolidating longstanding political, economic, social, cultural and traditional ties among the peoples of the region, promoting a people-centred development; enhancing and strengthening participation of the private sector and civil society; mainstreaming gender in all programmes and enhancing the role of women in development; promoting good governance, including adherence to the principles of democracy, rule of law, accountability, transparency, social justice, equal opportunities and gender equality; promoting peace, security and stability in the region and good neighbourliness among partner states.

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'Second East African Community Development Strategy' launched by Heads of State, 24 Apr 2001. Areas of cooperation include: trade, investment and industrial development; monetary and fiscal affairs; infrastructure and services; human resources, science and technology; free movement of factors of production; agriculture and food security; environment and natural resources management; tourism and wildlife management; health, social and cultural activities; the role of women, in socio-economic development; participation of the private sector and civil society; cooperation on political matters, including defence, security, foreign affairs and legal and judicial affairs. Together with: Southern African Development Community (SADC) and Common Market for Eastern and Southern Africa (COMESA), announced setting up of African Continental Free Trade Area (AfCFTA), Oct 2008.

Ongoing activities include: tariff reductions; removal of non-tariff barriers; harmonization of standards and specifications for goods and services, of investment incentives and codes, of customs classification codes, of banking rules and regulations, of VAT rates, of pre-shipment requirements threshold, of policies and trading practices and regulations of partner states' stock exchanges, of road transit charges, of environmental regulations and of regional judicial training syllabi and activities. Central banks of member countries agreed in 1996 to make the three currencies convertible. Committees include: 'Capital Markets Development Committee'. Current projects and programmes: East African Road Network Project; projects on the state of railways in East Africa; construction of the Tanga-Arusha-Musoma-Port Bell/Jinja Railway; East African Digital Transmission Project; Cross-Border Telecommunication Connectivity Project; East African Postal Automation Project; East African Civil Aviation Project; Project on Safety of Navigation on Lake Victoria; projects on East African Energy Master Plan, including fossil fuels, new and renewable source of energy and power; Power Interconnectivity Project; On-going studies: on establishment of an East African Trade Regime; Regional Programme for the Control of Cholera and Yellow Fever; Regional Programme on HIV/AIDS Control; Regional Gender and Community Development Programme; Project on Approximation/Harmonization on Municipal Laws; formulation of an 'East African Private Sector Development Strategy'; development of a comprehensive East African Agricultural and Rural Development Strategy; development of regional tourism in East Africa; standardization of hotels; economic potential and constraints to development of Lake Victoria and its basin as an economic growth zone; Memoranda of Understanding: on cooperation on environment management, signed 22 Oct 1998; on cooperation in defence, signed Apr 1998, revised 2001. Treaties: Tripartite Inland Waterways Agreement and Tripartite Agreement on Road Transport, signed 29 Apr 1998.


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Relations with Inter-Governmental Organizations

Relations with 30 inter-governmental organizations.
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Relations with Non-Governmental Organizations

Relations with 28 non-governmental organizations.
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Information Services

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Members in 3 countries
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Type II Classification

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Subjects *

  • Society
    • Communities
  • Commerce
    • Money
    • Customs
  • Government
    • Intergovernmental Communities
    • Political

UN Sustainable Development Goals **

GOAL 11: Sustainable Cities and CommunitiesGOAL 16: Peace and Justice Strong Institutions



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* Subject classification is derived from the organization names and aims.
** UN SDGs are linked to the subject classification.

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