The Regional Indicative Strategic Development Plan (RISDP) is a comprehensive development and implementation framework guiding the Regional Integration agenda of the Southern African Development Community (SADC) over a period of fifteen years (2005-2020). It is designed to provide clear strategic direction with respect to SADC programmes, projects and activities in line with the SADC Common Agenda and strategic priorities, as enshrined in the SADC Treaty of 1992.
The ultimate objective of the plan is to deepen integration in the region with a view to accelerate poverty eradication and the attainment of other economic and non-economic development goals.
The Regional Indicative Strategic Development Plan was formulated in March 2001 and was adopted and approved by the SADC Summit in August 2003. After the review of the operations of SADC and its institutions the same year, the Regional Indicative Strategic Development Plan was launched to provide clear direction to the new structure of SADC. The plan contains detailed milestones, target outputs and responsibilities for the first five years of the fifteen year plan (2005-2010). This five year plan was broken down further into annual plans (2005-2006, etc) to guide the first implementation phase. SADC hopes to enhance its effectiveness and efficiency through these planning procedures.
Priority Intervention Areas
In 2007, the SADC Council identified and approved twelve priority sectors in which action must be taken in order to achieve the overarching goal of Regional Integration and poverty eradication The Regional Indicative Strategic Development Plan provides milestones and targets for each priority area.
Summary/ Structure Regional Indicative Strategic Development Plan
The Plan is divided into seven chapters that cover background and context, the existing situation and the details of the plan. An overview of the chapters is provided below.
Chapter 1: SADC Framework for Integration
This chapter analyses the Southern African Development Community (SADC) Framework for Integration, including its Vision and Mission. It introduces SADC in its historical context, highlighting the reasons for its formation, how it has evolved over time and the rationale for formulating the Regional Indicative Strategic Development Plan.
Chapter 2: Economic, Human and Social Trends
This chapter describes and analyses the recent economic, human development and social trends in SADC, based on selected socio-economic indicators. It identifies the key issues and main economic and human development challenges facing the region that will be addressed through the Regional Indicative Strategic Development Plan. The chapter, however, starts by making a brief reference to the political environment underlying the socio-economic situation in the last decade.
Chapter 3: Identifies the gaps and current policies and strategies
Chapter 3 briefly analyses and evaluates current economic and social policies and strategies of the different areas of regional cooperation and integration in SADC. This evaluation is intended to identify the gaps and challenges facing SADC at present, in order to rationalise the programme of action and strategic priorities over the next 15 years, in line with SADC's main objectives.
The review of current policies and strategies is presented from the perspective of the following ‘new’ SADC clusters:
- Trade, Industry, Finance and Investment (TIFI);
- Infrastructure and Service (IS);
- Food, Agriculture and natural resources (FANR);
- Social and Human Development and Special Programmes (SHD & SP); and
- Policy, Planning and Resource Mobilisation (PPRM).
The selection of the Priority Intervention Areas presented in this chapter is based on their contribution to the overarching objectives and priorities identified in the Report of the Review of SADC Institutions, approved by SADC Heads of State and Government in Windhoek, Namibia in March 2001. The Intervention Areas are divided in two main groups, namely those related to specific areas of cooperation and integration, and those of a cross-sectoral nature.
The Priority Intervention Areas presented in this chapter are as follows:
1. Cross-Sectoral Intervention Areas:
- Poverty eradication;
- Combating the HIV and AIDS pandemic;
- Gender equality and development;
- Science and Technology;
- Information and Communication Technologies;
- Environment and Sustainable Development;
- Private Sector; and
- Trade/Economic Liberalisation and development;
- Infrastructure support for regional integration and poverty eradication;
- Sustainable Food Security; and
- Human and Social Development.
Chapter 5: Resource Mobilisation
The Regional Indicative Strategic Development Plan is a long-term development strategy for economic growth and development and requires major commitment of sustainable financial and human resources. This chapter addresses the financing mechanisms available to SADC as well as the policy framework necessary to mobilise funding for the Regional Indicative Strategic Development Plan. The analysis will focus mainly on the following potential sources of finance and financing mechanisms for development activities:
1. Financing for Development in SADC:
- Public finance;
- Official development assistance (ODA);
- Debt relief;
- Domestic savings;
- Foreign direct investment (FDI) and portfolio investment (FPI); and
- Development Finance.
2. Financing Mechanisms for Financing Development:
- Public-private partnerships (PPPs);
- Domestic financial and capital markets;
- Private equity and venture capital; and
- A SADC Development Fund.
Chapter 6: Institutional Framework
This chapter provides broad principles for the institutional mechanisms required for the successful implementation of the Regional Indicative Strategic Development Plan. Such implementation is predicated, to a large extent, on the capacity that exists at national and regional levels. Key capacity constraints relate to human resources, financial constraints and an appropriate institutional framework.
Other fundamental factors necessary for the effective implementation include:
- The acceptance, trust and real commitment of Member States to give importance and support to the proposed interventions;
- A common understanding and acceptance of the fundamental roles to be played by the line-function responsibility structures; and
- A long-term partnership between SADC and Cooperating Partners and regular policy dialogue and consensus building on critical socio-economic development and poverty eradication issues.
Chapter 7: Monitoring and Evaluation Mechanism
The final chapter outlines the framework for Monitoring and Evaluation of the Regional Indicative Strategic Development Plan.
The objectives of the Monitoring and Evaluation Mechanism are to:
- Ensure that the correct milestones are being achieved, as planned;
- Act as an early warning system in cases where targets are not likely to be achieved;
- Provide regular information to all stakeholders on progress of the Regional Indicative Strategic Development Plan and an informed basis for any reviews; and
- Ensure the continuous sharpening and focusing of strategies and assist in the mobilisation of appropriate interventions.
The monitoring and evaluation activities related to the Regional Indicative Strategic Development Plan will be based on manageable processes; measurable and verifiable indicators; and conform to basic rules of simplicity, timeliness and cost effectiveness.
The Regional Indicative Strategic Development Plan will be monitored regularly at three levels:
- Political and policy level;
- Operational and technical level; and
- Stakeholder level.