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 Japan has committed to support the EAC regional integration agenda and to strengthen areas of cooperation between herself and the East African Community. This was revealed today during a consultative meeting between representatives of the Government of Japan and the EAC Secretariat held at the EAC Headquarters, in Arusha.

The Deputy Ambassador of Japan to the United Republic of Tanzania, Counselor Hiroyuki Kubota underscored Japan's commitment to support and engage the EAC in various development projects and programmes between the two regions. "The Government of Japan firmly believes that in order to foster socio-economic development, the involvement of the private sector is key, and with this, the Government of Japan is committed to facilitating the involvement of the private sector in both regions to play its critical role in the EAC integration agenda," he remarked.

The EAC Secretary General, Amb. Dr Richard Sezibera expressed his appreciation to the Government of Japan for the ongoing support to the EAC both at the regional as well as bilateral levels. "The collaboration with Japan ranks highly in terms of its contributions toward deeper EAC integration," he noted.

Amb. Sezibera highlighted Japan's critical role in supporting the EAC agenda, noting her support in the development of the One Stop Border Posts (both hard and soft infrastructure); development of the Vehicle Load Control and the One Stop Border Post laws that are currently under going gazettement; co-financing with African Development Bank of the Arusha – Namanga – Athi River Road and various ports projects at the bilateral levels.

Present at the consultations was Japan International Cooperation Agency (JICA) Tanzania Office, Chief Representative, Mr Toshio Nagase who underscored Japan's commitment to deliver on all projects committed under the 5th Tokyo International Conference on African Development (TICAD V), reaffirming that those with various implementation challenges would soon be back on track, such as the Bujumbura Port Project.

Mr Nagase further informed the meeting that preparations for TICAD VI where underway and will address two thematic areas: human resources development and regional connectivity. "I call upon the EAC to propose priority projects under TICAD VI that are aligned to the two TICAV VI themes," he added.

In concluding their consultations, the two parties agreed to look into modalities of hosting a side event, jointly sponsored by EAC and Japan, on the sidelines of TICAD VI slated for August 2016 in Nairobi, Kenya.

Present at the consultative meeting were JICA Tanzania Office Representative, Mr Nobuyuki Kobe, EAC Deputy Secretary General in charge of Planning and Infrastructure, Dr Enos Bukuku and EAC Director of Infrastructure, Mr Phillip Wambugu.

SOURCE East African Community Secretariat (EAC)



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