With economic growth as a principal target, Kenya, Tanzania and Uganda have implemented deregulation and trade liberalization policies. By tracing the trends in major economic aggregates, the progress of these economies is reviewed. While acknowledging the conceptual arguments supporting the measures adopted, constraints in both the international economy and domestically have resulted in disappointing outcomes. International trade rules and practices, particularly in the agricultural sector, have worked against all three countries. Moreover, their domestic economies lack crucial resources. The results suggest that it may be a long time before the deregulation policies lead to a reduction in poverty.