Speaking during a workshop to discuss the Mutual Recognition Agreement (MRA) in Dar es Salaam, Eng. Mlote said the country has 5,081 professional engineers and 6,183 graduate engineers all totalling 11,264 engineers. He pointed out that Uganda has 400 engineers while Kenya has 1,600 professional engineers and 5,800 graduate engineers, making a total of 7,400 engineers.
"From these figures, it is obvious that the engineers we have in EAC are not enough to serve the 130 million people in the region, hence the need for cooperation," he said. Eng. Mlote noted that the MRA workshop was a result of the first meeting held in Kampala, Uganda in July 2012 which he said the registrars formed a committee known as "Committee of Registrars" to design a road map for the MRA.
"The Committee of Registrars has held several meetings to develop a draft for MRA which is aimed at allowing professional engineers to move freely across the common borders within the EAC and therefore enhance regional integration," he said.
He said the final draft of MRA will be presented to the regional stakeholders workshop scheduled for Arusha on November 12, 2012.
Eng. Gilbert Arasa, Kenyan ERB registrar, said there were many activities that need engineers but there was a shortage of particular experts in Kenya, saying the MRA will therefore tremendously facilitate to address the challenge. "The MRA will help us (Kenya) to address the challenge of engineers' shortage as the agreement allows free movement," said Eng. Arasa.
The meeting was attended by a wide range of stakeholders from the Institution of Engineers Tanzania (IET), the Association of Consulting Engineers Tanzania (ACET), contractors, regulators of universities (Tanzania Commission for Universities and the regulator for Technical Education (NACTE).