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Kenya leads in regional integration: report

09 May 2016, 07:54

Nairobi - Kenya is ranked among the top countries in regional integration, a report released on Sunday said.

According to the Africa Regional Integration Index Report 2016 which was presented in Nairobi during the African Union Executive Council Retreat, Kenya leads in regional integration within the Common Market for Eastern and Southern Africa (COMESA), East African Community (EAC) and Inter Governmental Authority on Development (IGAD).

The report was jointly prepared by the African Union Commission, African Development Bank and the UN Economic Commission for Africa.

The report said that Kenya is a top performer on free movement of people within the framework of the EAC Common Market Protocol.

The report tracked integration through trade integration, regional infrastructure, productive integration, free movement of people, financial and macro-economic integration.

Read Also: Kigali Forum to focus on connecting Africa's global digital role

The Index 2016 report covers member countries from the eight Regional Economic Communities (RECs) recognized by the African Union. EAC is the top performing REC on Regional integration overall.

The study indicated that in the EAC, Kenya and Uganda are among the top three contributors to wealth creation. They respectively account for 39 percent and 21 percent of regional Gross Domestic Product (GDP).

In the IGAD bloc, Ethiopia, Sudan and Kenya are the principal contributors to wealth creation in the region as they account for 29, 28.5 and 27.7 percent of regional GDP respectively.

The report further noted that trade links between Africa and the rest of the world is generally more direct and efficient compared to trade between neighboring regions as a result of infrastructure gaps and tariff barriers.

- Xinhua

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