South Sudan has become the sixth member of the East African Community (EAC) block after President Salva Kiir signed an ascension treaty in Tanzania’s commercial capital, Dar es Salaam.
Early last month the EAC Heads of State approved the admission of the new country, which is trying to recover from a civil war.
Tanzanian counterpart, John Magufuli, who doubles up as the bloc chairman hosted the South Sudan head.
The East African Community that was originally formed by Tanzania, Kenya and Uganda before Rwanda and Burundi joined the bloc a couple of years later.
Being admitted to the regional body means that South Sudan will enjoy all the economic benefits the club currently has to offer (freer movement of labour and capital and, in principle, free trade) and will join the members as they move to increase economic integration (through a monetary union) and eventually establish a single political federation.
South Sudan applied for membership to the EAC as soon as it gained independence in 2011.
However, its application was declined because of the country’s institutional weakness.