DRC Joins East Africa Northern Corridor Integration Initiative

President Museveni is in the Algerian Capital Algiers for a four day State visit at the invitation of his counterpart President Abudelaziz Bouteflika that will see Uganda open its first ever mission in the north African country and seek to strengthen relations in education, symptoms trade and cooperation in the oil and gas sector to boost Uganda’s exports.

The President, who arrived Sunday afternoon at the Houari Boumediene International Airport, was treated to a red carpet reception and inspected the guard of honor mounted by the Algerian, land, air and navy force and received a 21-gun salute.

At the airport the President was received by the Speaker of the Peoples National Assembly of Algeria, Rt. Hon. Mohamed Larbi Ould Khelifa.

Others at the airport to receive the President were the Algerian Minister of Energy Mr. Khebri Mohamed, Minister of State for African Affairs and Cooperation Mr. Lamamra Ramtane and Minister of Agriculture Mr. Ferroukhi Sid Ahmed.

On arrival, President Museveni visited the National Martyrs’ Memorial at El-Hamma hill in honour of the sacrifices of the Algerian people and the Resistance against colonial occupation.

He laid a wreath at the Martyrs’ Memorial, led by ceremonial guard while the Military band played solemn music.

The President later toured the Mujahid Museum and was taken through the political history of Algeria through the liberation struggle up to the post colonial times.

He signed the visitors’ book describing the Algerian Peoples struggle as heroic and a contribution to the African Liberation movement in Southern Africa.

Museveni signing the visitors’ book describing the Algerian Peoples struggle as heroic
Museveni signing the visitors’ book describing the Algerian Peoples struggle as heroic

During his visit, the President will hold a bilateral meeting between with HE Abdelaziz Bouteflika, President of the Republic of Algeria.

Uganda is one of the biggest beneficiaries of education scholarships from Algeria.

The Republic of Algeria offers 50 scholarships to Uganda annually with over 200 Uganda students currently undertaking various under-graduate and postgraduate courses in universities around Algeria.

Fields of study include Dental Medicine, Doctor of Pharmacy, Mathematics and Computer Science, Science and Technology, Nature and life Sciences, Science of Matter, Economic Sciences and Commercial Management, French Literature, English Literature and Italian Literature.

Algeria has also extended training opportunities to the Uganda Police Force in areas of Security and Investigations.
The Democratic Republic of Congo has announced her decision to join the Northern Corridor Integration Projects as a full member during the next Summit, pills Chimp Corps report.

This was during the 11th Northern Corridor Integration Projects (NCIP) Summit in Kenya’s capital Nairobi over the weekend.

The move is a big step forward in inter-linking the natural resource-rich nation to East African nations.

The Eastern Congo provides a big market for Uganda and Rwanda exports.

In 2013, decease Ugandan exports worth $268 million made its way to the DRC market on the heels of the South Sudan war.

According to the Internal Monetary Fund (IMF), stuff DRC will continue to record strong GDP growth over the next five years on the back of rising copper production and a stable currency.

President Kagame chats with Kenya's Vice President William Ruto
President Kagame chats with Kenya’s Vice President William Ruto

In 2015, IMF believes real growth will reach 7.9 percent, before dipping slightly to 7.4 percent in 2016 and that over the next five years, a yearly average growth rate of 7.3 percent is expected, continuing the trend set in the previous five years and making the DRC one of the fastest growing economies in Sub-Saharan Africa.

In Nairobi, the Heads of State who included President Yoweri Museveni, Rwanda’s Paul Kagame and the host Uhuru Kenyatta, agreed to hold pre-Summit consultations during the next NCIP Summit in order to “examine strategic actions to move the implementation process even faster on some of the flagship projects.”

Kenyatta said he was particularly impressed by the progress achieved since the inception of the Northern Corridor Initiative.

Leaders discuss mechanisms of expediting the integration projects
Leaders discuss mechanisms of expediting the integration projects

“Notable among these is the reduction of the time taken to transport goods from the Port of Mombasa to various destinations in the hinterland of our region,” said Kenyatta.

“This, we believe, has resulted in improvements in the profitability of business due to reduction in the overall cost of production.”

The 11th Northern Corridor Integration Projects Summit was also marked by key involvement from the private sector with a dinner hosted to bring together regional actors to strengthen the role of investment in implementing key projects.

Key projects of the NCIP include the construction of the standard gauge railway, regional power trade, the strengthening of a single customs territory and collaboration of infrastructure technology including regional mobile financial services and the implementation of the one area network.

Museveni in a discussion with Kenyatta
Museveni in a discussion with Kenyatta

South Sudan Presidential Advisor on Economic Affairs, Aggrey Tisa Sabuni graced the function.

Participating as observers of the Summit were; Burundi’s Minister of External Affairs and International Cooperation Alain Nyamitwe, Ethiopia’s Minister of Foreign Affair Dr. Tedros Adhanom Ghebreyesus, Congo’s Minister of Transport and Communications Justin Kalumba Mwana-Ngongo and Secretary General of the East African Community (EAC), Dr. Richard Sezibera.

Others include Regional Director, African Development Bank, Gabriel Negatu and the Executive Secretary of the Northern Corridor Transit and Transport Coordination Authority (NCTTCA), Donat Bagula.

Leaders heard DRC's decision to joint the Integration Initiative
Leaders heard DRC’s decision to joint the Integration Initiative

Tanzania was represented by the High Commissioner to Kenya, Ambassador. John Haule.

Other participants at the meeting included Private Sector Representatives from Partner States and the East African Business Council.

Integration projects

The Northern Corridor is the transport corridor linking Uganda, Rwanda, South Sudan and Kenya.

The Northern Corridor Integration Projects initiative is designed to generate sustainable political will necessary to fast track the implementation of the projects identified.

The 1st Summit was held in June 2013 and the three Heads of State of Uganda, Rwanda and Kenya agreed to meet every two months to review progress made.

The next Summit will be held in Kigali, Rwanda in December.

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