President Kenyatta, who is also the chairman of the EAC, pointed out that the accession signature immediately brings DR Congo into the realms and provisions of all the protocols and regional policies of the EAC.
He said the signing will be followed by the immediate removal of all existing Non-Tariff Barriers as well as limitations on the movement of capital, goods, services, and people, saying with time this will lead to a major increase in inter-EAC trade.
On his part, President Tshishekedi said the admission of DR Congo into the EAC was a fulfilment of dreams held by his country’s ancestors more than 60 years ago, adding that it marked a decisive shift in the country’s foreign and economic policy.
“DR Congo will actively play its role within the community so that it can become stronger and more prosperous,” President Tshishekedi said.
Presidents Museveni and Paul Kagame of Rwanda as well as EAC Secretary General Dr. Peter Mutuku Mathuki and Kenya’s Industrialization and Trade Cabinet Secretary Betty Maina who holds the East African Community docket in an acting capacity also spoke during the ceremony.