Trade Competitiveness in the East African Community

Export growth is a key driver of economic growth (Brenton and Newfarmer 2007) and hence understanding export competitiveness is important so as to inform appropriate policy measures that can harness a country’s economic potential. The correct design of interventions to enhance trade competitiveness requires forming an understanding of the type of products exported and the nature of the challenges that the East Africa Community (EAC) faces in international markets. This report describes the nature and evolution of trade between the EAC and the world during the last 15 years. This is a necessary step in order to identify where the main competitiveness constraints lie; where new opportunities are being created; and the potential areas of intervention.