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Somalia Officially Joins East African Community

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In a historic move, Somalia has become the eighth member of the East African Community (EAC) after the endorsement of its decade-long application during the 23rd Ordinary Summit of the EAC Heads of State in Arusha, Tanzania.

President Hassan Sheikh Mohamud expressed his joy, stating, “Today, we have opened a new chapter as a new member of the EAC,” and extended gratitude to the EAC heads of state for their trust and approval of Somalia’s application.

EAC Secretary General Peter Mathuki highlighted the significance of Somalia’s entry, emphasizing its potential to enhance the EAC’s geographical reach, strengthen multilateral and fiscal standing, and tap into Somalia’s blue economy resources, particularly in fisheries.

Somalia joins the ranks of Burundi, Kenya, Rwanda, South Sudan, Tanzania, the Democratic Republic of the Congo, and Uganda, presenting new opportunities for regional integration and economic growth.

The admission of Somalia is a result of negotiations initiated during the 22nd Extraordinary Summit, offering prospects for increased connectivity, trade, and the acceleration of Somalia’s transformation plan. The country’s extensive coastline, one of Africa’s longest, presents substantial blue economy resources, particularly in the fisheries sector.

Apart from Somalia’s inclusion, the Summit also addressed the progress of the EAC-led Nairobi Process on the Restoration of Peace and Stability in Eastern DRC. President Salva Kiir was elevated to the Chairperson of the Summit, succeeding Burundi’s √Čvariste Ndayishimiye.

Additionally, the Summit urged Tanzania, Rwanda, South Sudan, and the Democratic Republic of the Congo to expedite the conclusion of the EAC Political Confederation public consultation by mid-next year. The Democratic Republic of the Congo was named the EAC’s rapporteur in this significant regional development.

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