The East African Community (EAC) Secretariat in collaboration with the EAC Partner States and International Development Partners are in the final preparations for the Joint EAC Heads of State Retreat on Infrastructure and Health Financing and Development scheduled for February 21-22, 2018 at Speke Resort Munyonyo, in Kampala, Uganda.
According to the EAC Secretariat in Arusha, the joint Heads of State Retreat themed ‘Deepening and widening regional integration through Infrastructure and Health Sector Development in the EAC Partner States’’ is aimed at accelerating the attainment of the objectives of the EAC Development Strategy, the African Union Agenda 2063 and the Sustainable Development Goals in the infrastructure and health sectors in the EAC.
‘During the retreat the Heads of State will address infrastructure and health development and financing in East Africa, which will be followed by the 19th Ordinary Summit of the EAC Heads of State on February, 23, 2018.
The retreat is expected to give impetus to infrastructure and health development by way of harnessing political support for regional flagship projects, funding commitments, and Public-Private Partnerships arrangements’ the EAC release dated January 19 indicates in part.
The retreat will target key priority projects in railways, ports and inland waterways, energy and connecting roads prioritized to de-congest the cities and enhance logistics at the ports and, as agreed during the 3rd Retreat, the 4th Retreat is expected to receive a report on the projects and programmes of the civil aviation and airports sub sectors.
In respect to health, the EAC Secretariat noted: ‘The Joint Retreat is being held at a time when the EAC Partner States are expanding the capacity for the delivery of high quality health services, training and research such as through the AfDB/Partner States’ financed regional centers of excellence (RCoE) for Kidney Diseases (Kenya); Heart Diseases (Tanzania); Cancer (Uganda); e-Health, Biomedical Engineering and Health Rehabilitation Sciences (Rwanda); and Vaccines, Immunization and Health Supply Chain Management (Rwanda).’
Meanwhile, the retreat will be preceded by the separate infrastructure and health sector investors’ and donors’ round-tables on February 21, 2018. Also to be held prior to the Retreat will be Ministerial Session of the 36th Meeting of the Council of Ministers and the Ministerial Session of the 35th Extra-Ordinary Meeting of the Council.
The separate donor round tables will be held at ministerial level and will review progress of implementation of previously prioritized infrastructure projects and deliberate on investment opportunities and funds mobilization strategies for quicker delivery of prioritized regional infrastructure and health projects.
The Retreat Programme includes an International Infrastructure and Health Sector Exhibition that will run from February 21 to 22, 2018, expected to provide a platform for players in the two sectors to showcase their new products and services.