22 February 2016

Southern Africa: Pre-Council Briefings

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Gaborone, Botswana — The SADC Council of Ministers meeting will be taking place on 14th and 15th March, 2016 here in Gaborone, Republic of Botswana. The SADC Council of Ministers traditionally meets annually during this period of the year to review implementation of its decisions, and approve the SADC budget. This Council will therefore primarily discuss and approve the budget for the 2016/2017 SADC activities, and will review progress made on the implementation of 2015/2016 Plan and budget and its decisions taken at its last meeting in August 2015 here in Gaborone. SADC financial year runs from April to March.

The Council of Ministers will be preceded by the following meetings starting from 5th March, 2016.

Dates for meetings

5 - 6 March Meeting of Senior Treasury Officials

7 March Meeting of Ministerial Task Force Senior Officials

8 March Preparation of documents for the Standing Committee of Senior Official

9 - 11 March Meeting of the Standing Committee of Senior Officials

12 March Meeting of the Ministers of Finance and Investment

13 March Meeting of the Ministerial Task Force on Regional Integration

14 - 15 March Council of Ministers

Venue

Gaborone International Conference Center (GICC)

Purpose

While reviewing progress in the implementation of the Plan and budget for 2015/2016, the Council will deliberate on priorities and plans for 2016/2017 that are expected to contribute and foster SADC regional integration and development agenda. The focus for 2016/2017 continues to be on:

1. Implementation of priorities outlined in the revised regional Indicative Strategic Development Plan 2015-2020, which prioritizes industrialization and market integration; infrastructure development to support regional integration; peace, security and political cooperation; special programmes of regional dimension;

2. Finalisation of the Industrialization Action Plan, while continuing implementing the Phase 1 of Industrialisation Strategy whose interventions are contained in the RISDP 2015 - 2020.

3. Continued implementation of the Regional Agricultural Policy in order to improve production, productivity, competitiveness and trade in the agricultural sector, natural resources and environment. This is expected to contribute to industrialization and market integration, while enhancing food security and the management of natural resources and the environment.

4. Intensification of the implementation of member States' economic reforms, plans and strategies in a consistent manner to resolve the challenges affecting their economies and set their economies on a sustainable growth path.

SADC SECRETARIAT

FEBRUARY 2016

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