Last year the presidents of Kenya, Tanzania, Rwanda, Uganda and Burundi who are also leaders of the East African Community (EAC) signed into effect a common market protocol which will see goods, services and labor flow through the region unhampered.
The region is regularizing the customs union, which allows for a common external tariff for goods coming into the EAC, which was a necessary precursor to the common market.
It is hoped that the deal will lead to a greater economic clout for the region. The common market is due to come into effect by July 2010. The East African Community was launched ten years ago and has a population of 120 million.