Luanda — The Angolan minister of Trade, Rosa Pacavira, Thursday in Lilongwe, Malawi, said that Angola will not join at the ongoing summit the Free Trade Zone of the Southern African Development Community (SADC).
Speaking to Angolan journalists, on the occasion of the discussions by the Council of Ministers of the implementation plan for regional integration, particularly the Free Trade Zone, the minister said that experts from various sectors are working to make this membership happen as soon as possible.
"We will maintain the position taken in Maputo, as there are still some adjustments we need to make, as it involves several sectors like energy, agriculture and others," she said.
Asked when Angola would join, the Government minister pointed 2014 or 2015. The Free Trade Zone, launched in August 2007, in Johannesburg, at the 28th SADC Summit, had the adhesion of South Africa, Botswana, Lesotho, Malawi, Mauritius, Mozambique, Namibia, Swaziland, Tanzania, Zambia, Zimbabwe and Madagascar. Angola, DR Congo and Seychelles remained out.
The aim is to strengthen the economic integration and rapid industrialisation in the sub-region of the continent, through the expansion of business opportunities and gradual removal of trade barriers.
Among the countries that joined, South Africa has the strongest economy, with a Gross Domestic Product (GDP) of USD 282 billion, representing 65% of the SADC toal market.
The Southern African Development Community (SADC) is an economic and political bloc that has among other objectives to stimulate trade in goods and services among member countries, reduce poverty within the populations and promote sustainable growth in member countries.
SADC groups Angola, South Africa, Botswana, Democratic Republic of Congo, Lesotho, Madagascar (suspended), Malawi, Mauritius, Seychelles, Swaziland, Tanzania, Zambia and Zimbabwe.