The East African Community member states must immediately commence developing National Economic Recovery plans with special focus on agriculture.
The plan will seek to guide member states on mitigating the effects of Covid-19 that have ravaged much of the global economy.
In the last two-months, businesses including those in the agro sector, have been disrupted with value chains, especially in tourism, upset.
In view of the above, the East African Community Secretariat has finalised an EAC Covid-19 Response Plan and is developing the EAC Recovery Strategy based on a regional approach.
Mr Christophe Bazivamo, the EAC Secretariat deputy secretary general in charge of productive and social sectors, said in a statement that while many people have already lost jobs and are struggling through Covid-19, there is a window of opportunity to prepare for the time after and to prevent another catastrophe.
Specifically, he said, partner states must strengthen their food production systems by allowing farming activities to continue.
“Partner states should more than ever promote use of technology and digital solutions to improve agriculture production and trade in agriculture products,” Mr Bazivamo said.
The EAC has in the last months received good rains since September 2019 and the meteorological forecast up to May 2020 show near normal to above normal rains.
“All this presents good prospects for the agriculture sector,” said Mr Fahari Marwa, the EAC Secretariat principal agricultural economist, noting that pastoralists and farmers should take advantage of these conditions to improve animal, food and cash crop production so as to fill the region’s food basket.