Issue 02 | 15 August 2017
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The 37th Summit of Heads of State and Government of the Southern African Development Community (SADC) is taking place from 9 – 20 August 2017 in Pretoria, South Africa.
 
 
 
 
OFFICIAL MEETINGS
 
OFFICIAL OPENING OF THE COUNCIL OF MINISTERS MEETING AHEAD OF THE 37TH SADC SUMMIT
 
 
 
The council consists of ministers from each of the 15 Southern African Development Community (SADC) member states and oversees the work of the SADC Secretariat.

 
His Royal Highness Prince Hlangusemphi, Minister of Economic Planning and Development of Swaziland, handed over the Chairpersonship of the SADC Council of Ministers to South Africa's Minister of International Relations and Cooperation, Ms Maite Nkoana-Mashabane, during the opening of the two-day meeting of ministers on Tuesday, 15 August 2017.

Accepting the Chairpersonship of the SADC Council of Ministers, Minister Nkoana-Mashabane said it was with great honour and privilege that she welcomed ministers to the 37th SADC Council of Ministers.

"I am especially pleased to welcome you to the OR Tambo Building in the year declared by our Government as the Year of Oliver Reginald Tambo, who was also affectionately known as OR Tambo to our people and one of the most outstanding leaders of the liberation struggle who mobilised international solidarity against apartheid and contributed to shaping the vision of a post-apartheid democratic South Africa. As we celebrate the centenary of OR Tambo, we draw inspiration from his exemplary leadership and from the vision that accorded him the accolade of international statesman and an astute, consummate diplomat.
 
"Allow me to also take this opportunity to thank, on behalf of all ministers, the outgoing Chairperson of Council, HRH Prince Hlangusemphi Dlamini, for his excellent stewardship of council.

"As we may be aware, 2017 also symbolises an important year for our organisation which celebrates 25 years this year. This silver jubilee celebration accords us an opportunity to reflect on how far we have come in fostering pragmatism and cohesion in our region.

"For South Africa, August is Women's Month and every year during this time, we remember the sacrifices and contribution of women in the struggle for a democratic and free nation. At regional level, women continue to enhance our shared vision of attaining a stable, peaceful, secure and prosperous SADC community.

"As Incoming Chair of the Council of Ministers, it is pertinent that I highlight the importance of the SADC Integration Agenda for South Africa and for our neighbourhood. We all remain collectively seized with the responsibility of improving the lives of our people. 

"In our journey towards regional integration, it is critical that we recognise the relationship and interconnectedness of our regional priorities and the agreed aspirations of the African Union's African Agenda 2063. Our objectives in SADC are informed by the SADC Common Agenda which in essence, comprises our agreed blueprints such as the Regional Indicative Strategic Development Plan (2015-2020), the Regional Industrialisation Strategy and Roadmap, the Strategic Indicative Plan of the Organ II and the Regional Infrastructure Development Masterplan.

"Guided by our identified priorities as well as the leadership demonstrated by previous chairs, South Africa's theme for the Chairship of SADC and the 37th Ordinary SADC Summit of Heads of State and Government is: 'Partnering with the Private Sector in Developing Industry and Regional Value Chains'. The theme picks up on the already identified importance of industrialisation for the prosperity of the region and seeks to strengthen the region's capacity to realise industrialisation and economic transformation through partnership with the private sector. In this regard, emphasis would be put on agro-processing, mineral beneficiation and pharmaceutical value chains. As such, our vision for this year is to provide policy direction and an enabling environment for a work programme that prioritises the preparation of high-impact cross-border projects that are pragmatic, enhance skills, create jobs and boosts regional trade in high-value goods.

"As regional leaders, we carry a burden of responsibility to substantially improve the quality of life for the people of our region and to realise sustainable economic development. To this end, we cannot be found to be wanting or to have failed. As such, we must commit appropriate resources and make a concerted effort to cooperatively work together towards the SADC We Want. Further to this, we must, as member states, support the SADC Secretariat to deliver on its annual work programme and strengthen the Secretariat's institutional capacity and effectiveness."
 
 
MINISTER NKOANA-MASHABANE AND THE SOUTHERN AFRICAN DEVELOPMENT COMMUNITY (SADC) EXECUTIVE SECRETARY BRIEF MEDIA ON THE 37TH SADC SUMMIT
 
The official Summit programme began on 10 August 2017 with the meeting of the SADC Standing Committee of Senior Officials.
 
 
 
 

On 14 August, the Minister of International Relations and Cooperation, Ms Maite Nkoana-Mashabane, and the Executive Secretary of SADC, Dr Stergomena Lawrence Tax, briefed the media on the 37th SADC Summit of Heads of State and Government that is being hosted by South Africa under the theme: "Partnering with the Private Sector in Developing Industry and Regional Value Chains".

Minister Nkoana-Mashabane shared information on the meeting of the SADC Council of Ministers being held from 15 - 16 August in preparation of the 37th Ordinary Summit of SADC Heads of States and Government.

The Council of Ministers oversees the functioning and development of the SADC and ensures that policies are properly implemented.

The council consists of ministers from each of the 15 member states, usually from the ministries of foreign affairs, economic planning, or finance, and it meets twice a year in February or March and immediately prior to the summit in August or September.

The Minister said that 17 August was an important day on the SADC calendar as this was the day when the regional organisation was established in 1992.

"To commemorate this day, the current Chairperson of SADC, His Majesty King Mswati III of the Kingdom of Swaziland, will deliver the SADC Day Message for 2017, which will be shared with the media."

On Friday, 18 August, the Ministerial Committee of the ORGAN (MCO) on Politics, Defence and Security Cooperation and the ORGAN Troika Meeting will be held.

On Saturday, the 19th, the Official Opening of the 37th Ordinary Summit of the SADC Heads of State and Government will take place at the OR Tambo Building.

Issus under discussion

Minister Nkoana-Mashabane said the council would receive progress on actions undertaken by the Secretariat in implementing the SADC Industrialisation Strategy and Roadmap 2015-2063.

"The council will:

  • Receive and review the proposed Milestones for Monitoring Implementation of the SADC Industrialisation Strategy and Roadmap for approval by the summit.

  • Receive reports on the findings of the exercise on profiling of the mineral and pharmaceutical sectors and identification of potential areas for the development of value chains

  • Receive progress on the operationalisation of the SADC University of Transformation, following the meeting of the Committee on Higher Education, Training and Research that met on 20 March 2017. The committee observed that the concept of the SADC University of Transformation had the potential to address the provision of appropriate skills required for value addition, in the three agreed value chains of the SADC Industrialisation Strategy and Roadmap. The committee improved the terms of reference for the skills assessment and scoping study to take into account the issues from the summit to cover transformative initiatives from member states.

  • Receive the report on the outcomes of the Ministerial Retreat on 'The SADC we Want', which was held in Ezulwini, Swaziland, in March 2017 and the progress on the development of the Implementation Plan and Roadmap.

  • Receive some legal instruments such as the draft Agreement amending the Protocol on Extradition, and the Draft Agreement Amending the Protocol on Mutual Legal Assistance in Criminal Matters, with a view to recommend to the summit for approval and adoption and subsequent submission to the State Parties for signatures.

  • Receive and consider the Report of the SADC Executive Secretary for the period 2016-2017, which includes the overview of the political and economic developments in the region, the Implementation of Programmes of Regional Cooperation and Integration, the implementation of Corporate Activities, the Continental Cooperation and Integration, the Development Cooperation and Resource Mobilisation, the Good Governance and Financial Management, and the Summary of Implementation Challenges and Recommendations. The report will cover progress on the Secretariat activities, challenges confronted and proposals aimed at addressing such challenges and subsequently, council will provide guidance where necessary, on the implementation of SADC programmes and projects for regional cooperation and integration.

  • Receive progress on the implementation of the Tripartite Free Trade Area (TFTA), the COMESA-EAC-SADC Agreement and Continental Free Trade Area negotiations.

  • Consider the Draft SADC Common Position on the negotiations of the Draft Protocol to the Treaty Establishing the African Economic Community relating to the Free Movement of Persons, Right of Residence and Right of Establishment.

  • Recommend for approval by summit, the convening of the SADC Solidarity Conference with Saharawi Arab Democratic Republic/Western Sahara.

  • Receive progress on the second year of the implementation of the Regional Indicative Strategic Development Plan (RISDP), as well as the progress report on the implementation of the RIDP and the proposed Milestones for Monitoring Implementation of SADC Industrialisation Strategy and Roadmap for approval by the summit.

  • Receive the progress made in the development of the draft Concept Paper on the SADC Peace Fund to be submitted to the next Ministerial Committee of the ORGAN (MCO) for consideration.

  • Receive the report from the meeting of the Ministerial Committee of the ORGAN (MCO) on Politics, Defence and Security Cooperation, held on 21 July 2017 in Dar es Salaam, Tanzania, on the application by the Union of Comoros, and the Republic of Burundi for membership to SADC.

  • Receive the report on the improvement of the food security situation in the region following the climate change factors that affected the region with some of the member states experiencing drought while others experienced floods.

  • Receive the report and decisions from the Committee of Ministers of Finance and Investment on the operationalisation of the SADC Regional Development Fund, the Regional Resource Mobilisation Framework and the Disaster Preparedness and Response Fund as well as the request to approve the regional Disaster Preparedness and Response Fund as part of the Social Window in the SADC Regional Development."
 
 
"SADC SUCCESS STORIES" LAUNCHED
 
  The publication is one of the Secretariat's tools to communicate SADC programmes to the SADC citizens to enhance awareness about the positive impact such programmes have on communities and lives of the people in the region.

 
 
On 14 August, the Executive Secretary of the Southern African Development Community (SADC), Dr Stergomena Lawrence Tax, launched the second edition of the SADC Success Stories Book,

"For a long time, our region has been painted by stories of diseases, conflict, hunger and poverty. But as a region, we have moved many steps in the positive direction. Today, we are here to send a clear message that we have positive stories to tell," said Dr Tax.

Dr Tax added: "Thanks to the dreams of our founding fathers, through regional integration, SADC is slowly but surely realising regional economic transformation and sustainable socio-economic development".

Each success story, covering SADC achievements in agriculture and agricultural research, climate change, financial services, industrialisation and regional value chains, infrastructure, peace, security and conflict mediation, tourism and conservation, trade, and water, highlights the links between regional policy-making, national implementation, and the tangible benefits for SADC citizens.

The first edition of the SADC Success Stories, which was launched in 2015, reached over one million SADC citizens through the print brochure, videos and social media.

In his remarks, the German Ambassador to Botswana and Observer to SADC, His Excellency Mr Ralf Andreas Breth, said the Federal Government of Germany remained committed to supporting SADC in its efforts to develop even more success stories of regional integration for the benefit of the people in southern Africa.

"Southern Africa is a region of tremendous opportunities, and regional integration has great potential to improve lives in SADC member states," said Ambassador Breth, adding that stories were an innovative way to make SADC achievements visible for the people of the SADC region.

He said since 1990s, Germany had supported SADC with a total amount of around 400 million euros, in addition to bilateral development cooperation with eight of the 15 SADC member states.

The second volume was produced with support from the German Ministry of Economic Cooperation and Development (BMZ) through the Deutsche Gesellschaft für Internationale Zusammenarbeit (GIZ) GmbH as part of the German Development Cooperation with SADC. – Source: http://www.sadc.int/
 
 
LAUNCH OF IMPLEMENTATION OF NATIONAL PROJECTS UNDER THE SOUTHERN AFRICAN EVELOPMENT COMMUNTY (SADC) TRADE RELATED FACILITY (TRF) PROGRAMME
 
The implementation of national projects under the SADC TRF Programme was launched during a meeting on 14 August at the Protea Hotel Fire & Ice, Menlyn, Pretoria.
 
Mr John Taylor, representative of the European Union (EU) and Jabulani C Mabuza, Minister of Commerce, Industry and Trade from Swaziland made statements during the event.

The SADC Secretariat has a Facility Support Unit (FSU) that was set up to facilitate implementation of the SADC TRF, established through a Contribution Agreement between the EU and SADC. Located at the MASA Centre in Gaborone's Central Business District, the FSU provides technical support to member states in implementing their commitments under the SADC Protocol on Trade and the Economic Partnership Agreement (EPA) with the EU.

Left to right:  Dr Mamba Mandla and Mr Mubita Luwabelwa, SADC Secretariat; Jabulani C Mabuza, Minister of Commerce, Industry and Trade, Swaziland; and EU Representative, Mr John Taylor
 
 
 
DID YOU KNOW?
 
One of the stories featured in the SADC Success Stories Book is the construction of the Kazungula Bridge over the Zambezi River. The bridge will soon form a major transport link in the heart of the region.

Once the project is complete, it is expected to reduce border-transit times. Improved border operations will curb congestion. It will provide the much-needed connection between the regional economic areas and link regional ports, which handle exports and imports from and through Botswana and Zambia.

Namibia and Mozambique, through Walvis Bay and Nacala respectively, are growing a network of development corridors, which SADC will develop over the years.

These two initiatives are set to drive massive investment in infrastructure and strengthen the road and rail network trade corridors.

In agriculture, the book highlights the development of the Bvumbwe tomato variety, which was cultivated to address the specific environmental conditions and needs of the region.

The tomatoes produced not only create jobs but they have high nutritional value, which addresses food security in the region, especially for low-income households.

The book is available in the three official SADC languages: English, Portuguese and French.
 
 
 
For more information on SADC, go to www.sadc.int or follow us on social media: www.facebook.com/sadc.int and on twitter at sadc_news or #sadcsummit.
 
 
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Editor: Delien Burger
Picture Editor: Jacoline Schoonees
Design and layout: Gladwin Komane

 

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