19 February 2018

Southern Africa: Middle-Income Countries Meet for Experience Sharing Forum

Southern African governments and United Nations (UN) entities are in the country to discuss development of middle-income countries (MICs) in the African context.

The experience sharing forum for Botswana, Lesotho, Namibia, South Africa and Swaziland (BLNSS) kicked of on Monday at the Strand Hotel, in Swakopmund and will conclude on 20 February. The first such forum was held on 12 July, 2016 in Johannesburg.

UN Coordination Analyst in Namibia, Martha Wilhelm in a statement on Friday said, the experience sharing forum is in response to requests by the MICs in Southern Africa to have updates on global and regional initiatives, enhance understanding of implications, opportunities and constraints of being MICs, share experiences bilaterally between the countries on innovations in MICs and identify areas of possible collaboration.

According to Wilhelm, by the end of the forum, the delegates will have shared experiences on UN operational activities in their respective countries, deliberated with the respective governments on challenges and opportunities for enhanced UN system support in MICs as well as documented best practices on UN operational activities for each of the countries amongst potential outputs.

Meanwhile, middle-income countries are defined as those with a per capita gross national income (GNI) of US$1,026 to 12,475 US dollars.

In Southern Africa, Angola, Lesotho and Swaziland as well as Botswana, Namibia and South Africa are middle-income countries, with the latter three registering a per capita income over US$3,946 dollars per year.

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