The Tanzania Times
Eastern Africa News Network

Somalia brings the Horn and the longest Indian Ocean coastline into the East African Community

As Somalia joins the East African Community, the country brings aboard the longest national coastline in Africa, stretching at 3,025 kilometers.

When linked with the Indian Ocean shorelines that are mapped along the other two EAC member states of Kenya and Tanzania, the length will extend to 5,869 kilometers, making the regional bloc essentially to own a lion share of the sea.

Tanzania has a coastline broadening to 1,424 kilometers while Kenya’s shoreline meanders at the total length of 1 420 kilometers, all facing the mighty Indian Ocean with innumerable islands in between.

The other EAC member state, the Democratic Republic of the Congo, has a strip of 40 kilometers coastline on the other side of the continent along the Atlantic Ocean.

The Federal Republic of Somalia is now an official member of the East African Community, making the number of EAC countries to reach eight and counting.

The Horn of Africa has successfully deposited the country’s Instruments of Ratification to the East African Community Secretary General, Dr Peter Mathuki at the EAC Headquarters in Arusha.

A high-level delegation led by Somalia’s Minister of Commerce and Industry, Jibril Abdirashid Haji Abdi, jetted into Tanzania, on Monday to deposit the instrument.

The Treaty of Accession was signed by Somalia’s President Sheikh Hassan Mohamud and the Chairperson of the Summit of EAC Heads of State, Salva Kiir Mayardit, who is also the President of the Republic of South Sudan in Entebbe, Uganda on 15th December, 2023.

The signing ceremony was witnessed by Ugandan President Yoweri Kaguta Museveni.

In line with the EAC Admission Procedure for new members, Dr. Mathuki pronounced the Federal Republic of Somalia as a new member of the Community.

 The Secretary General will subsequently inform Somalia in writing that the new member has deposited the Instrument of Ratification of the Treaty of Accession and is a full member of the Community [Article 153(1) of the EAC Treaty.

The Secretary General will then deposit the Treaty of Accession with the African Union and the United Nations expressing the new member’s commitment to be bound by the Treaty [Article 153(2) of the Treaty.

In addition to the founding three EAC member states, Kenya, Uganda and Tanzania, the Arusha-based regional bloc currently includes Rwanda, Burundi, Somalia, South-Sudan and the Democratic Republic of Congo.

During their 23rd Ordinary Meeting in Arusha, the Summit of the East African Community Heads of State considered the Report of the EAC Council of Ministers on the Negotiations with the Federal Republic of Somalia into the community, and resolved to admit Mogadishu as a full member of the Community.

The Summit further directed that within six (6) months after the signing of the Treaty of Accession, Somalia shall be required to deposit the instrument of ratification with the EAC Secretary General in Arusha, Tanzania.

The Heads of State also directed the EAC Council of Ministers to develop a roadmap for the integration of Somalia into the Community and report progress to the next meeting of the Summit.

Other Partner States of the EAC which is essentially the fastest integrating bloc in Africa include the Republic of Burundi, Democratic Republic of the Congo, Republic of Kenya, Republic of Rwanda, Republic of South Sudan, Republic of Uganda and the United Republic of Tanzania.

Also expected to join the regional block anytime soon is Ethiopia and Sudan.

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