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Statement of the Chairperson of the Commission on the establishment by Ethiopia of a visa-on-arrival regime for all African Citizens

Addis Ababa, 11 October 2018: The Chairperson of the African Union (AU) Commission, Moussa Faki Mahamat, welcomes the announcement made, on 8 October 2018, by President Mulatu Teshome to the joint session of the House of People’s Representatives and the House of Federation of Ethiopia regarding the establishment of a visa-on-arrival regime for all African passport holders entering the country starting from the fiscal year 2018-2019. He commends Ethiopia for this measure, and reiterates his appreciation to the Member States that have already taken steps to ease the travel of African citizens on the continent. He urges all Member States that have not yet done so to take similar steps.

The Chairperson looks forward to the day when all Africans can freely circulate in their own continent. In this respect, he underlines the need for all Member States to become parties to the January 2018 Protocol to the Treaty Establishing the African Economic Community Relating to Free Movement of Persons, Right of Residence and Right of Establishment. So far, 32 Member States have signed this instrument, while only one Member State – Rwanda – has ratified it. Fifteen ratifications are required for the entry into force of the Protocol.

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