Economic Commission for Africa (ECA) today convened a Ministerial meeting on the Lamu Port South-Sudan Ethiopia Transport (LAPSSET) Corridor at the United Nations Conference Centre in Addis Ababa, Ethiopia.
In attendance was, H.E Rt. Hon. Raila Odinga, AU High Representative for Infrastructure Development in Africa, H.E. Dr. Vera Songwe, Executive Secretary, ECA, H.E. Dagmawit Moges, Minister of Transport Ethiopia, Hon. Adan Mohamed, Cabinet Secretary of East African Community & Regional Integration Kenya, Eng. Lado Tongun Tombe Pitiya, Representative of Minister of Transport South Sudan, various ambassadors among other delegates.
The meeting was opened by H.E. Dagmawit Moges, Minister of Transport, Ethiopia, who welcomed the participants to Ethiopia and affirmed the country’s support to the LAPSSET project.
The Africa Union High Representative for Infrastructure Development in Africa, H.E Rt. Hon. Raila Odinga in his remarks said that, the LAPSSET corridor has created solutions to African problems. Additionally, he acknowledged that the project has been listed as one of the 10 champion projects of the African Union PICI-an initiative coordinated by AUDA-NEPAD.
Hon. Raila Odinga noted the Kenyan Government’s commitment to implementing the LAPSSET corridor projects. The Kenyan Government commissioned the 1st berth of Lamu port on 20th May 2021 in a ceremony inaugurated by President Uhuru Kenyatta.
H.E. Dagmawit Moges, Minister of Transport, Ethiopia, (first row second from left) Hon. Rt. Raila Odinga, AU High Representative for Infrastructure Development in Africa (First row third from left) Amb. Dr Samori Okwiya Chief Executive Ofiice NEPAD/APRM Kenya Secretariat (Second row third from left) among other delegates during the ministerial meeting.
In her statement, H.E. Dr. Vera Songwe, Executive Secretary, ECA, reiterated the benefits of the LAPSSET corridor as a generator of employment, economic development and prosperity. She added that the LAPSSET corridor will improve peace and security at the cross border points. She also appraised the Kenyan Government for involving women in the project.
In his remarks, The Director General, LAPSSET Corridor Authority, Mr. Maina Kiondo, confirmed that 60% of roads have been completed so far.
“…as we speak today, a lot of highways have been completed. The road from Lamu to Garissa is under construction, Garissa to Modogashe road is complete, Modogashe to Isiolo is under construction, Isiolo to Moyale is complete”
He further acknowledged the benefits of the LAPSSET Corridor among them being enhanced tourism, improvement of social amenities, increased employment opportunities and allowing Kenyan neighbouring countries to access their goods much faster allowing for increased revenue, easier cash flow management and greater trade opportunities in the region and beyond.
While moderating the panel presentations of the Country-based progress reports the Chief Executive Officer, NEPAD-APRM Kenya Secretariat, Amb. Dr. Samori Okwiya, affirmed the Secretariat’s support on the implementation of LAPSSET Corridor Projects.
H.E Dagmawit Moges, Minister of Transport, Ethiopia (Centre), Mr. Adan Mohammed the Cabinet Secretary for East African Community & Regional Development. (left) and Eng. Lado Tongun (Right).
The footprint countries finally established a Steering and Technical Committee for the LAPSSET project. The committee will be led by H.E Dagmawit Moges, Minister of Transport, Ethiopia , Mr. Adan Mohammed, Cabinet Secretary for East African Community & Regional Development and Eng. Lado Tongun (Sudan). The Committee will be tasked with working together to implement the LAPSSET project in the three countries.