Democratic Republic of Congo Becomes the 7th Member of EAC

After several negotiations, Democratic Republic of Congo (DRC) has finally become a full-fledged member of the East African Community. The EAC was established in 1967, as an inter-governmental organization composed of seven countries in the African Great Lakes region in East Africa. The EAC has its headoffice located in Arusha, Tanzania. 

The Democratic Republic of Congo (DRC) is now an official member of the East African Community (EAC) after depositing instruments of ratification on the accession of the EAC Treaty with the bloc’s secretariat, according to the statement obtained from Arusha, Tanzania. 

It further stated that, at a function held this July 11 at the EAC headquarters in Arusha, the DR Congo delegation led by its Vice Prime Minister and Minister for Foreign Affairs, Christophe Lutundula Apala Pen’ Apala, completed the final step in joining the regional bloc. 

“This is a formalization of a situation that has always been in existence. Somehow, we can say the DRC joined their people,” said Apala Pen’ Apala. “In the name of the DRC, all the institutions and the people of Congo, we totally trust the EAC.” 

He, however, reaffirmed his country’s commitment to being part of the Community and joining the various areas of cooperation in all the sectors, programmes and activities that promote the four pillars of regional integration – the Customs Union, Common Market Protocol, Monetary Union and the Political Federation. 

“Today marks the completion by the DRC of the processes and procedures towards becoming a full-fledged member of the EAC,” said Dr Peter Mathuki, EAC Secretary-General. “Article 11 of the Treaty of Accession by the DRC to the EAC Treaty provides that the Accession Treaty shall enter into force on the date the DRC deposits the instrument of ratification with the Secretary-General of the EAC. So, I am very happy to declare that, this day 11th July 2022, the DRC has become the 7th Partner State of the EAC.” 

The EAC key mission is to widen and deepen economic, political, social and cultural integration to improve the quality of life of the people of East Africa through increased competitiveness, value added production, trade and investments. The East African Community is a regional inter-governmental organization comprising the following republics: Burundi, Kenya, Rwanda, Tanzania, South Sudan and Uganda. 

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