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Regional Finance ministers discuss trade, digital markets

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 Finance Ministers from East and Horn of Africa regions met in Djibouti on Saturday to discuss regional connectivity, June 26, 2021 (ENA photo)

June 26, 2021 (DJIBOUTI) - Finance Ministers from the East and Horn of Africa regions met in Djibouti on Saturday to discuss regional connectivity through trade, digital markets and energy.

In attendance, according to Ethiopia’s Foreign Affairs ministry, were Finance ministers of Ethiopia, Djibouti, Kenya, Somalia and Sudan.

The meeting also evaluated progress witnessed so far in areas such as trade and energy in the region a way forward devised.

During the meeting, Ethiopia’s Finance Minister, Ahmed Shide commended the African Development Bank (AfDB), European Union (EU) and the World Bank Group (WBG) for their continued commitments in helping advance the implementation of the programs of the Horn of Africa Initiative (HoAI).

He underscored the need to hone capacity in inclusive cross-border value chains across the region.

The minister also welcomed Sudan’s new status as a full member of HoAI, adding that the Initiative would develop new priorities to align Sudan’s economic development agenda with its program.

Djibouti’s Finance minister, who is currently the chairperson of the HoAI Secretariat, llyas Moussa Dawaleh said over US$3.3 billion has so far been mobilized from the three development partners to finance critical regional priorities, including transport connectivity, energy trade, digital economy, trade facilitation, agro-pastoralism and locust control.

It also emerged during the meeting that HoAI is currently working to mobilize a $15 billion financing package for its already approved priority development projects.

The meeting was also attended by Mrs Nnenna Nwabufo, the Director-General East Africa of the AfDB and Dr Workineh Gebeyehu, the Executive Secretary of the Intergovernmental Authority on Development (IGAD) who was in attendance as an observer.

(ST)

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