President Uhuru Kenyatta has arrived in Arusha, Tanzania to attend the 17th Ordinary East African Community (EAC) heads of State summit.
The summit is being hosted by Tanzanian President John Pombe Magufuli.
According to the EAC Secretariat, top on the agenda of the meeting will be the launch of a regional electronic passport (e-passport) and the consideration of reports by the EAC Council of Ministers on the negotiations on admission of the Republic of South Sudan into the Community, sustainable financing mechanisms for the EAC and the EAC institutional review.
According to the Kenya’s Department of Immigration, the passport will be issued towards the end of the year and will be embedded with a contactless electronic chip.
The e-passport will have a secure identification, provide protection against identity theft as well as eliminate of data skimming. “This is to inform the General Public that the EAC heads of State will be launching a regional e-Passport in Arusha Tanzania on March 2, 2016,” said a notice from the immigration department.
The meeting will also consider council reports on the model, structure and action plan of the EAC political federation; implementation of the framework for harmonised EAC roaming charges; modalities for promotion of motor vehicle assembly in the region and reduction of the importation of used motor vehicles from outside the Community.
Others are the promotion of the textile and leather industries in the region, and stopping importation of used clothes, shoes and other leather products from outside the region.
The summit is also expected to deliberate on a report by the council on the verification exercise for the admission of the Republic of Somalia into the EAC.
Also scheduled to be launched by the summit is the private sector fund, which is expected to deepen the participation of the private sector in the East African integration process.