The East African Community on Thursday presented a budget of $91.5 million for the 2022-2023 fiscal year.
The East African Community’s economy is expected to contract an average of 5.9 percent in 2021 to 5.3 percent in 2022, according to the regional Council of Ministers.
The EAC Chair of the Council of Ministers and Kenyan Minister for East African Affairs Betty Maina, said that rising commodity prices are having a negative impact on the region’s economy.
“The budget estimates for fiscal year 2022-23 come at a time when the rapid economic recovery is progressing experienced in the region and beyond in the wake of the Covid-19 pandemic is being threatened by rising prices for fuel and other commodities caused by the Russian-Ukrainian conflict,” Ms. Maina said During the presentation of the budget to the members of the East African Legislative Assembly in Arusha.
The legislators of the East African Legislative Assembly expressed concerns about the ongoing decline in the community budget.
According to lawmakers, the EAC budget has increased by almost 30 million dollars down from $120 million five years ago to $91 million currently.
“For a community that is meant to grow and we are growing, for now we have we bring in DRC, we expand institutions, but at the same time the budget is cut. I think there is a very big challenge and a problem somewhere,” said Denis Namara.
George Odongo said: “We think big, we speak big, we have very good ambitions as community, but we put almost no resources into activating our ambitions as a community. We need a reality check as a community and it starts with conversations about what our strategic interest in our integration is.”
Paul Musali added: “They say the economy is declining and Challenges related to the conflicts and pandemics, but capitals’ budgets have gains.”
According to the EAC, the region continues the implementation of the Single Customs Territory after the resumption of global economic activities and easing of the Measures to contain Covid-19.
59% of the budget will be contributed equally by partner countries and 41% will be provided by development partners.
Of the $91.5 million, $45.1 million will go to the EAC Secretariat, $15 million to the East African Legislative Assembly, the east africa niche Court of Justice $3.8 million, Lake Victoria Basin Commi $8.2 million and the Inter University Council for East Africa $10.5 million.
Also receives the Lake Victoria Fisheries Organization $2.8 million, East African Science & Technology Commission $1.7 million, East African Kiswahili Commission $1.2 million, East African Health Research Commission $1.8 million, and East African Competition Authority (EACA) $1 million.