Regional Workshop on ‘Strengthening the Role of Civil Society in Deepening EAC Regional Integration’

CUTS Africa Resource Centre (CUTS ARC), Nairobi jointly with CUTS Geneva Resource Centre (CUTS GRC) under the project entitled, ‘Building an Inclusive East Africa Community’ (BIEAC) organised a regional workshop on ‘Strengthening the Role of Civil Society in Deepening EAC Regional Integration’ in Nairobi, Kenya on May 27-28, 2010. The aim of the BIEAC project is to empower and strengthen civil society in the EAC in their roles as proactive agents in the promotion and deepening of regional integration in EAC.

The objectives of the workshop were to:

  • Provide a forum to share the BIEAC Phase-II research outputs with the civil society and other stakeholders from all five EAC countries involved in and/or relevant to the implementation of the project in order for them to use it in their advocacy initiatives of promoting and enhancing the benefits of EAC regional integration; and
  • Provide a discussion forum to deliberate on various aspects of the involvement of civil society organisations (CSOs) in regional integration in EAC.
  • Therefore, the specific aims of this workshop were:

  • provide CSOs with an opportunity to share their experiences in working on trade and to showcase best practices and effective tools to help target groups;
  • identify in more detail the obstacles facing CSOs but also opportunities opened to them in contributing to the elevation of the trade pillar of EAC integration, and, specifically, on the thematic issues of the BIEAC researches;
  • identify in more detail methods and/or support measures that will help CSOs in EAC to work on trade-related issues more effectively and to highlight these to policy-makers; and
  • update CSOs on the importance of integration programmes EAC is currently engaged with and to strategise for their engagement in the ongoing processes