– Kenya and Ethiopia have signed a number of deals that may possibly reaffirm Kenya’s position as a dominant ecomnomy in the East African region
– After Uganda pulled out of an oil deal with Kenya, Uhuru has now signed a two route crude oil pipeline with Ethiopia
– Uhuru and Ethiopia’s PM Hailemariam Dessalegn also agreed on trade, health, education and sports which may soon feature a two country marathon
President Uhuru Kenyatta and Ethiopia’s Prime Minister Hailemariam Dessalegn yesterday, Friday, June 24, signed a number of deals that have re-affirmed Kenya’s dominance in the East African region.
Top of the agenda was the signing of a major oil deal that will see two crude oil pipeline routes built from Kenya to Ethiopia by the end of 2016.
The first pipeline, to be launched in December, will run from Nakuru-Isiolo-Moyale to Awasa in Addis Ababa while the second one will run from Lamu-Isiolo-Moyale to Awasa.
This deal comes a month after Kenya lost out on an oil pipeline deal with Uganda, as the country chose Tanzania for their partners because it was considered cheaper to divert the pipeline through Tanzania.
Kenya decided to go the mile on its own and built pipelines that will transport crude oil once oil wells discovered in Northern Kenya became commercially viable.
The two leaders also agreed on the establishment of a Joint Railway Commission and a Project Coordination Committee to help in the bilateral agreements signed in March 2012 between Nairobi and Addis.
The deal pertained to matters involving trade and investment between the two countries.
They also agreed to speed up the ongoing construction of the Moyale One Stop Border Post (OSBP) and have it operational soon.
They went ahead to witnessing the signing of five Memorandum of Understanding involving oil and gas, health, sports, animal health and sanitary measure as well as education.
“The two leaders agreed to explore the possibilities of launching a joint grand Kenya/ Ethiopia marathon as a sports brand to promote cultural cooperation and sports tourism,” read a joint press statement from State House.
They also committed to support the African position in the upcoming international conferences scheduled to be held in Nairobi.
The events are the 14th United Nations Conference on Trade and Development (UNCTAD) and Tokyo Conference on Africa’s Development VI (TICAD) Summit in 17th to 22nd July and 27th to 28th August, 2016 respectively.
Aside from the deals, the two leaders also discussed issues of conflict and peace.
They agreed to share information on the movement of anti-peace elements, human and drug trafficking and illegal arms dealers and committed to share experiences in the management of possession, registration and licensing of firearms.
Hailemariam completed his State visit today, Friday, June 24, having invited Uhuru Kenyatta to make another visit to his country soon.
Uhuru will be heading there the second High Level Biennial Commission in the first half of 2018.