Integration Efforts in the East African Community

The East African Community (EAC) is an economic bloc formed by Kenya, Tanzania, Uganda, Rwanda and Burundi. The countries have a history of cooperation dating back to the early 20th century. In the recent years, they have started various infrastructure projects to improve the connection between its members, ultimately decreasing the cost of doing business and making the bloc more attractive to trade with foreign countries.

Singapore is enjoying this opportunity, with investments in the African continent growing at a compound rate of 12% per year; the city-state has traded more than US$400 million with the EAC alone in 2013. Singapore is currently involved in various businesses in the region, ranging from agriculture to digital logistics solutions, and is eager to expand its presence even more. This pace will increase as legal frameworks and institutions covering the whole EAC bloc gain strength and eliminate corruption in the region; and when basic infrastructure problems are solved and an easy flow of goods and services is reached in the region.

Mombasa and Dar es Salaam, Gateways for East Africa

The East African coast occupies a strategic position that allows maritime connections between the African continent and the Middle East and Asia. The ports of Mombasa, in Kenya, and Dar es Salaam, in Tanzania, are the most important in the region and, since the colonial times, compete to be the most relevant in East Africa. Million of tonnes of goods are imported through both of them from other coastal countries and continents and exported to the world.

Gas-Fired Turnaround

After many years of chaos, Mozambique finally experienced a period of blossoming economic growth following 2001. Several major foreign investment projects, continued economic reform, and the revival of the agriculture, transportation, and tourism sectors were key factors propelling the country towards a sustained annual GDP growth greater than 5.8% since 2005, and over 7.0% from 2011 onwards. According to the World Bank, the forecast of the annual GDP growth until 2017 in the country is greater than 7.4%.

Adding to this economic boom, the discovery of immense natural gas reserves came as a sign from above that prosperity in Mozambique would be unstoppable.