COMMUNIQUÉ - The Heads of State and Government meeting of the Member States of the Southern African Customs Union (SACU), 16 July 2010
Adopted on Friday, 16 July 2010 in Pretoria, South Africa
The Heads of State and Government of the Member States of the Southern African Customs Union (SACU) met on the 15th and 16th July 2010 in Pretoria, South Africa, to reflect on the achievements and challenges, as well as to deliberate on the future strategic direction of SACU, in view of recent regional and global developments.
The meeting was chaired by His Excellency President Jacob Zuma of the Republic of South Africa and was attended by His Majesty, King Mswati III of the Kingdom of Swaziland, His Excellency President Hifikepunye Pohamba, President of the Republic of Namibia, His Excellency President Lieutenant General Seretse Khama Ian Khama of the Republic of Botswana, and His Excellency the Right Honourable the Prime Minister Pakalitha Bethuel Mosisili of the Kingdom of Lesotho.
The Heads of State and Government recalled the outcome of the centenary summit and expressed satisfaction with the successful launch of the commemoration of SACU’s 100 years of existence.
The Heads of State and Government recalled the new Vision for SACU to be ‘an economic community with equitable and sustainable development, dedicated to the welfare of its people for a common future’, that was adopted and signed on 22 April 2010 in Windhoek, Namibia.
The Heads of State and Government observed that over the past 100 years SACU has been confronted with several challenges, which necessitated its continuous adaptation.
The Heads of State and Government considered SACU’s achievements and the internal and external challenges currently facing SACU. Current challenges and strategic opportunities require that we do things in a different way to the benefit of all members of SACU.
Accordingly, the Heads of State and Government direct the Ministers to develop strategies to promote win-win solutions to address among others the followings challenges:
a) Strengthening the capacity in the Secretariat;
b) Developing the necessary policies and procedures to conclude the establishment of institutions;
c) Ensuring that all work on industrial policy, agricultural policy, competition policy, unfair trade practices and other priority commitments in the SACU Agreement are being implemented;
d) Developing a SACU trade and tariff policy, and trade strategy that support industrialisation in SACU;
e) Developing deliberate initiatives to promote intra-SACU trade;
f) Following the principle of unified engagement amongst SACU Member States in trade negotiations with third parties, while recognising different levels of development and capacity of Member States;
g) Investigating financing options for cross-border projects;
h) Exploring the possibility of a review of the 2002 SACU Agreement;
i) Developing SACU positions on new generation issues, taking into account ongoing negotiations;
j) Defining a roadmap for moving towards an Economic Community and Monetary Union;
k) Consideration of the sharing of SACU Revenue; and
l) Positioning SACU at the centre of the regional economic integration agenda.
The Heads of State and Government recognised that despite the challenges, SACU has played and continues to play an important role in the economies of its Member States.
The Heads of State and Government agreed that SACU be transformed into a vehicle for regional economic integration capable of promoting equitable development, in order to ensure it achieves its new vision.
The Heads of State and Government further recognised the role that SACU can play in Southern Africa as a building block for deeper regional integration, given its level of integration.
The Heads of State and Government have agreed to meet again by the end of October 2010.
The Heads of State and Government congratulated South Africa on its successful hosting of the 2010 FIFA World Cup.
The Heads of State and Government expressed their appreciation to the Government and People of the Republic of South Africa for the warm hospitality extended by South Africa in hosting the inaugural meeting of SACU Heads of State and Government.