, DAR ES SALAAM, Jul 17 – President Mwai Kibaki has challenged planners in Kenya and the East African region to design viable projects capable of sustaining themselves in view of the global economic crunch.
The President observed that the current world economic crisis had affected the abilities of most governments to render services and designers need to go for self-sustaining projects capable of posting some revenue.
He spoke in Dar es Salaam, Tanzania when he inaugurated a newly constructed chancery to host the Kenya High Commission Offices and High Commissioner’s residence.
The chancery will provide office accommodation to other institutions to generate income.
The land housing the two buildings, the Head of state said, was acquired on a reciprocal basis with the government of Tanzania which acquired a plot in Upper Hill, Nairobi for the construction of the country’s chancery in Kenya.
He congratulated the Ministry of Foreign Affairs and other stakeholders involved in planning and implementation of the project for their foresight.
President Kibaki said the decision to construct a chancery and residence in Dar es Salaam was a clear indication of the importance Kenya attaches to its relations with Tanzania.
"We the peoples of the two countries share a long history of special relations and therefore it is our singular objective to strengthen and promote these relations through the new chancery and residence," the President said.
On the ongoing East African Community integration process, President Kibaki noted with appreciation that trade volumes between the Kenya and Tanzania have continued to grow with increased cross border investments by nationals of both countries.
The Head of State expressed his government commitment to work closely with other EAC partner countries in upgrading the existing road and rail network in the region to facilitate trade.
The President challenged EAC member states to prioritise development of manpower and skills that are relevant to growth and industrialization saying joint cooperation in agricultural research and energy is absolutely essential in the region’s economic development.
"One of the priority areas for the East African Community is completion of road networks aimed at improving connectivity in the region. A good example is the Arusha-Namanga-Athi River and the Emali-Terekea-Moshi road projects," he said.
On the anticipated common market protocol, President Kibaki said the economic outlook of the community would be boosted through opening up of investments and trade prospects for our people.
The President was optimistic that the implementation of the common market protocol will come to fruition and thus enable the partner states in the region exploit their respective comparative advantages.
President Kibaki reiterated that relations enjoyed by Kenya and Tanzania should be upheld to catalyze the realization of the common objective of building a viable East African community as a stepping stone towards effective participation in the global economy.