East African Community

The East African Community (EAC), consisting of Burundi, Kenya, Rwanda, Tanzania, and Uganda, is a leading regional economic organization in sub- Saharan Africa, and has made great strides in recent years toward integration. The EAC has a combined population of more than 153 million and a GDP of $109 billion. USAID supports the EAC to improve the quality of life of the people of East Africa through increased competitiveness, value added production, enhanced food security, trade and investment.
USAID supports the EAC through the Assistance Agreement for Comprehensive Regional Development through September 2017.  To date USAID has provided $17m in assistance.  In FY 2015, USAID will provide direct assistance in the following areas:
  • Trade and Investment
  • Environment
  • Agriculture
  • Health
USAID also provides support to the EAC through the East Africa Trade and Investment Hub.


USAID has supported the EAC to implement the Customs Union to enable East Africans to move goods regionally with fewer delays and less expense, including:
  • The Customs Management Act to harmonize customs regulations and procedures in compliance with World Trade Organization (WTO) and World Customs Organization (WCO) standards.
  • Harmonized Customs Procedures including publication of a manual to guide member states in adhering to international best practices.
  • Harmonized Customs Valuation Methods, a major step toward ensuring compatibility with the WTO Customs Valuation Agreement and WCO recommended best practices.
  • Implementation of a Common External Tariff to rationalize duties on cotton, textiles, apparel and staple foods entering the EAC.
  • Customs Interconnectivity through adoption of the web-based RADDEx 2.0 system allowing centralized sharing of customs clearance information, saving time and money, and increasing transparency.
USAID supported the EAC to establish the Common Market to liberalize trade in goods, services, cross border finance and the movement of people. Support includes:
  • Joint Border Committees established to improve coordination between government agencies and the private sector at 16 key border posts.
  • Development of a Trade Help Desk, a web
  • -based system with trade statistics and market access requirements to improve transparency in trade information.
  • Harmonization of standards for 22 staple foods to liberalize and increase regional trade in these commodities.
  • Simplified Certificate of Origin introduced to allow duty free cross border shipment of EAC-origin goods worth less than $2,000, allowing small farmers and traders to increase trade.
  • Regional Financial Deepening and Integration increasing access to finance for underserved populations.
USAID supported EAC’s Environmental programs include:
  • A Trans-boundary Biodiversity program in the Mara River Basin to improve sustainable management of basin resources, including a Biodiversity Action Plan to manage the Mara Basin ecosystem, and a Water Flows Assessment System to help manage Mara river water usage by stakeholders.


Issuing Country 
Wednesday, February 10, 2016 - 11:00am