East Africa: China Dishes Out Support Towards EAC Projects

THE East African Community (EAC) implementation of different projects has got a new stimulus, with China donating vehicles worth 400,000, USD and 200,000 USD for capacity building as well as providing scholarships.

The People's Republic of China has offered 12 vehicles valued at 400,000 USD to be used in different programmes, saying that it was keen on working with the EAC in, among other fields, education, infrastructure development, trade, prevention of Ebola, peace and security and capacity building initiatives.

The Political Counselor at the Chinese Embassy in Dar es Salaam, Mr Liang Lin, who paid a courtesy call on the EAC Secretary General, Ambassador Liberat Mfumukeko at the EAC Headquarters in Arusha, disclosed that China was working on infrastructure projects that would promote connectivity across the entire African continent.

The Counselor said the infrastructure projects include road and railway networks, adding that other areas were developing hydropower, power transmission and expansion of seaports.

The envoy further said that China will also assist in building industrial parks in the EAC partner states and is looking forward to more discussions on the EAC initiative on bamboo farming in the region.

Mr Lin revealed that plans were underway to implement infrastructure development projects worth US$16 billion to be implemented over a three year period on the entire African continent, courtesy of the 2018 Beijing Summit of the China-Africa Cooperation.

On capacity building, Mr Lin who represented the Chinese Ambassador to Tanzania and the EAC said China will be providing 50,000 scholarships to African countries and urged EAC to tap into the study opportunities.

He further presented a donation of 200,000 USD from China's Ministry of Foreign Affairs to the Secretary General, money that will go towards capacity building programmes in the EAC.

Ambassador Mfumukeko expressed his appreciation to the People's Republic of China for its generous donation towards the Community's capacity building programmes.

He said that EAC Partner States had agreed to harmonize cross-border rules and procedures and to open their borders thereby increasing intra-regional trade.

He urged China to upscale multilateral financing for development projects in East Africa to complement the current bilateral financing for the same.

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