Tanzania, Kenya to coordinate efforts in economic diplomacy

14Dec 2019
The Guardian Reporter
Dar es Salaam
The Guardian
Tanzania, Kenya to coordinate efforts in economic diplomacy

TANZANIA and Kenya have promised to continue cooperating in ensuring their countries’ development and strengthening economic diplomacy.

Giving a speech to mark the 56th anniversary of Kenya’s independence, Minister for Foreign Affairs and East African Cooperation, Prof Palamagamba Kabudi said Tanzania and Kenya are like brothers and will continue to cooperate to see economic diplomacy is strengthened at all times.

“We – Tanzania and Kenya are blood brothers hence we wish you well in bringing development to Kenya. But you must also know that Kenya’s development means Tanzania’s development,” Prof Kabudi said, noting that developments recorded in the two countries will also benefit neighbouring Uganda, Burundi, Rwanda, South Sudan, the broader East African Community (EAC).

In return, High Commissioner Dan Kazungu commended Tanzanian authorities for the unity and solidarity it has shown to Kenya which has been a stimulus for the development of the two countries.

He said: “I would like to say that the unity and solidarity has spurred development among the two countries. We must remember that unity is strength and our goal is to cooperate between us and with all the nations in the world.”

Kazungu stated that Tanzania will continue to be special to Kenya due to the solidarity it has been showing to Kenya socially, politically and economically.

“It is remembered that in April this year when the two Heads of State met in Arusha we succeeded to remove 25 trade obstacles out of 37, and this proves how Tanzania and Kenya are brotherly nations who are bent on strengthening trade between them,” he elaborated.

Kenya accounted for 15 of the non-tariff barriers while Tanzania’s share stood at 22.

Official data show that Kenyan exports to Tanzania dropped to a 10-year low of Kenya Shillings 28.5 billion in 2017, but reversed to Sh29.7 billion in 2018. Kenya sold goods worth Sh42.7 billion to Tanzania in 2014.

Imports from Tanzania to Kenya rose from 12.8bn/- in 2016 to 17.8bn/- last year, narrowing the trade gap between the two nations.

Under the terms of the East Africa Common Market, free movement of goods, people, labour, services and capital within member countries is supposed to be observed for citizens of the member states or businesses registered in any of the partner states.