The East African Business Council (EABC) has signed a partnership with the Nelson Mandela African Institution of Science and Technology (NM-AIST). The partnership aims to bridge the skills gap and mismatch and upscale the digital transformation of the EAC bloc.

PwC’s 22nd Annual Global CEO Survey findings have shown that 65% of African CEOs state that skills shortage prevent organizations from innovating effectively. According to East African Qualifications Framework for Higher Education (EAQFHE), Survey 2014, skills gap affect 77% of productivity, 42% efficiency and 8% competitiveness of businesses in East Africa.

The agreement has proposed scientific and technical symposiums across the EAC bloc to commercialize innovations and research. These research propositions hope to improve collaboration on evidence research-based advocacy on agribusiness, health and industrial development and rolling out of professional.

In his remarks, Prof. Emmanuel Luoga, Vice-Chancellor of NM-AIST said, “This partnership is built on shared values to solve societal problems, promote innovation and aspirations of Africa growth – Agenda 2063.”

The Vice-Chancellor added that the partnership reinforces theoretical approaches with practical tactics responding better to industry needs in the EAC regional integration agenda.

The Chief Guest Hon. John Mongella, Regional Commissioner of Arusha represented by Eng. Richard Ruyango, District Commissioner of Arumeru said, “The Government of the United Republic of Tanzania is committed to support the aspirations and implementation of the MoU between EABC and NM-AIS, as the East African people are the real beneficiaries of this remarkable partnership.”

The signing ceremony was graced by Hon. Dr. Peter Mathuki, Secretary-General of the East African Community (EAC) represented by Alhaj Richard Kibowa, EAC Director of Trade. Mr. Mathuki encouraged more academia-private partnerships for the social-economic transformation of the EAC bloc.