DRC, Sudan want to Join EAC
The Democratic Republic of Congo and Sudan could be the next two states to become members of the East African Community, EAC’s secretariat in Arusha has revealed.
Ambassador Juma Volter Mwapachu, the Secretary General for the EAC stated during a press conference last week that DRC and Sudan have expressed interest in boosting the community membership from the current five to seven states.
Mr Mwapachu explained that the joining of both Sudan and DRC could become a reality within the second decade journey of the regional cooperation set to start with the establishment of common market in January 2010.
"DRC has discovered that it is more inclined towards the East, relying on both Mombasa and Dar-Es-salaam harbors for its external trade while most of the Sudan economic and social deals face south towards Kenya, eventually these two states will become part of EAC," Mwapachu said.
The East African Community which sailed on November 30, 1999 with the establishment of the
EAC treaty, then with only Tanzania, Kenya and Uganda as members, marks its first decade
anniversary this week having added Rwanda and Burundi along the ten-year-long journey.
Speaking in Nairobi earlier on the he Head of Mission of the Government of Southern Sudan to Kenya, Ambassador John Andruga Duku was quoted by the media expressing his views that even if it was not the whole of Sudan then Southern Sudan which is closest to East Africa can be invited into the community as an observer state.
Mr Duku added that other East African states will benefit from the presence of oil in Sudan while they can also sell industrial goods to the country.
Sudan which is the largest state in both Africa and Arab world and DR of Congo the third largest country (by area) in the continent will together make East Africa the
biggest regional community in the world. The integration of the two countries will also boost EAC population from the current 120 million to over 230 million.