Kenya’s President Uhuru Muigai Kenyatta conducted a two-day state visit to Tanzania on 9-10th December 2021 for the celebration of the country’s 60 years of independence.
He was received by the president of Tanzania Samia Suluhu Hassan at the White House where a parade was organized in his honor.
President Kenyatta and President Samia held formal talks on further strengthening relations and cooperation.
In this regard, President Samia said that trade between Tanzania and Kenya has increased from TZS 885.4 billion in 2013 to TZS 1.1 trillion in 2020.
To further promote trade, the two presidents directed the responsible ministers to ensure that they remove the remaining non-tariff barriers (NTBs) that were undermining trade and investment between the two countries.
Out of 64 NTBs that were earlier identified, 46 were already solved, and the 18 remaining should be solved in the shortest time possible, the presidents stressed.
To promote further strengthen economic relations and cooperation, seven Memorandums of Understanding (MoUs) were also signed during the talks.
The seven treaties included agreements on immigration issues; prisons and prisoners exchanges; border veterinary control; health, housing and housing development, and an agreement on investment issues.
The signing of the MoUs follows the establishment of a Joint Cooperation Commission (JCC) that was agreed upon when the two presidents met in Nairobi last May LINK.
The presidents also spoke of collaborating in addressing the Covid-19 pandemic and boosting tourism by joint-promoting their tourist attractions.
For this, Tanzania and Kenya have agreed to exchange roan antelopes and female black rhinoceros to boost the reproduction of the two species, as Tanzania has currently about 4,000 roan antelopes while Kenya has only 12 of the species, President Hassan explained.
The two presidents also reiterated their commitment to continue implementing two strategic bilateral projects, the construction of the natural gas pipeline from Dar es Salaam to the city-port of Mombasa in Kenya, and the construction of the coastal tarmac road connecting Tanzania and Kenya (Bagamoyo-Malindi).
For his part, President Uhuru Kenyatta thanked President Samia for inviting him to be the Guest of Honor at the 60th Anniversary of Independence and emphasized the need to continue to work together for the benefit of the people of both countries.
Kenya is among Tanzania’s main trading partners. However, Kenya and Tanzania have been at odds over economic and logistic issues, with traders from both countries rivaling each other.
Despite both countries being part of the East African Community (EAC), border checks and conflicts have resulted in unrest and protests along the border.