1. Directorate of Policy, Planning and Resources Mobilisation (PPRM): This Directorate reports to the Deputy Executive Secretary for Regional Integration and it is responsible for Policy Analysis, Planning and Programming, Monitoring and Evaluation, and Resource Mobilisation.
2. Directorate of Industrial Development and Trade (IDT): This Directorate reports to the Deputy Executive Secretary for Regional Integration and its mandate is to ensure that the SADC Region is self-sufficient in goods and services that can be traded within the region and with the world. The mandate encompasses the whole chain of activities beginning at product inception with Scientific Research and Development; to industrial value chain production and setting of the specification of the goods and services in standards and technical regulations; then finally to trade.
3. Directorate of Finance, Investment and Customs (FIC)): This Directorate reports to the Deputy Executive Secretary for Regional Integration. It is mandated to facilitate trade and financial liberalisation; and to create an enabling environment for investment, all contributing to deeper regional economic integration, growth and poverty eradication.
4. Directorate of the Organ on Politics, Defence and Security Affairs (OPDSA): This Directorate reports to the Executive Secretary. The Directorate of the Organ covers areas of Politics and Diplomacy, Defence, State Security, Public Security and Police. It coordinates the implementation of SADC Organ on Politics, Defence and Security – an institutional framework for coordinating policies and activities on politics, defence, and security to promote peace and security in the region.
5. Directorate of Infrastructure: This Directorate reports to the Deputy Executive Secretary-Regional Integration and the mandate of the Directorate is to achieve efficient, seamless, integrated and cost-effective cross-boundary infrastructure networks and services that will enable economic development, regional integration and poverty alleviation. The Directorate focuses specifically on the development and quality of strategic infrastructure in the Southern African region, recognizing that regional infrastructure development creates a larger market and greater economic opportunities. It covers the sectors of Energy, Transport, Information, Communication and Technology (ICT), Water and Meteorology.
6. Directorate of Food, Agriculture and Natural Resources (FANR): This Directorate reports to the Deputy Executive Secretary-Regional Integration and supports initiatives to improve food availability, access, safety and nutritional value; disaster preparedness for food security; equitable and sustainable use of the environment and natural resources; and strengthening institutional frameworks and capacity building. The FANR Directorate covers areas of Natural Resources and Wildlife, Environment and Climate Change, Tourism, and Food Security and Agriculture. The FANR Directorate also includes the Plant Genetic Resource Centre, a centre of excellence based in Lusaka Zambia which works in coordination with plant genetics centres in each of the SADC Member States to conserve and preserve the genetic diversity and viability of Southern African plant stocks.
7. Directorate of Social and Human Development (SHD): This Directorate reports to the Deputy Executive Secretary-Regional Integration and is mandated to ensure the availability of educated, skilled, healthy, productive human resources required for promoting investment, efficiency and competitiveness of the region in the global economy, as well as improving the quality of lives of the region's population. The Directorate covers, Health and Nutrition, HIV and AIDS, Employment, Labour and Youth; and Education and Skills Development.
8. Directorate of Internal Audit and Risk Management (IARM): This Directorate reports to the Executive Secretary and is mainly responsible for providing assurance on internal controls within the Secretariat. It has been structured to address two aspects of its mandate, on one side it is responsible for coordination of risk management for the entire Secretariat and on the other hand provides assurance on risks mitigation measures and internal control environment through internal audit function.
9. Directorate of Finance: This Directorate reports to the Deputy Executive Secretary for Corporate Affairs and its overall mandate is to deliver an effective and efficient financial advisory service within the SADC secretariat which ensures the achievement of the SADC Secretariat’s financial objectives. The Directorate of Finance covers, Accounting Services, Grants/Contracts, and Treasury and Budgets.
10. Directorate of Human Resources and Administration (DHRA): This Directorate reports to the Deputy Executive Secretary for Corporate Affairs and is mandated to provide efficient and effective services in the areas of Human Resources, Administration, Records Management and Conference Services that support the SADC Secretariat’s fulfilment of its key mandate towards regional integration and socio-economic development.
In addition, the SADC Secretariat has the following stand-alone Units:
11. Gender Unit: reports to the Executive Secretary and its mandate is to facilitate, coordinate, monitor and evaluate the implementation of the SADC Protocol on Gender and Development, regional sectoral strategies, the RISDP as well as other regional, continental and global gender instruments that SADC Member States are party to. is responsible for facilitating a well-coordinated regional strategy for effective gender mainstreaming, networking and exchange of good practices in efforts to achieve gender equality and women empowerment. The SADC Gender Unit spearheads mainstreaming gender in all regional initiatives to ensure that a gender perspective permeates the entire SADC Regional Integration Agenda.
12. Disaster Risk Reduction Unit
The mandate of the SADC Disaster Risk Reduction (DRR) Unit in the Secretariat of the SADC Regional DRR mechanism that coordinates disaster risk reduction activities and programmes within the SADC region. The Unit, among other things, coordinates the implementation of the Sendai Framework for DRR (2015-2030), the Africa Regional Strategy for Disaster Risk Reduction Strategy and the SADC DRR Strategic Plan. The Unit monitors the regional and Member States Disaster Risk Management practices against the set regional, continental and global targets
13. Conference Services Unit
The Conference Services Unit reports to the Directorate of Human Resources and Administration and it is responsible for providing support to SADC Policy and other meetings in terms of documentation, translation, interpretation services, conference facilities and scheduling of meetings.
14. Procurement Unit
The Procurement Unit has the overall responsibility of coordination and implementation of the procurement and call for proposal processes of the SADC Secretariat. Procurement Unit’s strategic objective is to support the operations of the Secretariat through timely acquisition of goods, services and works while ensuring; Economy and effectiveness, Best value for money, fairness, integrity and transparency through competition, and Accountability and ethical standards among stakeholders.
15. The Legal Unit
The Legal Unit reports directly to the Executive Secretary and it is responsible for guiding SADC in the application and interpretation of SADC legal regimes including the SADC Treaty, SADC Protocols and legal instruments and the application and interpretation of international law.
16. Information, Communication and Technology (ICT) Unit
The ICT Unit reports to the Deputy Executive Secretary-Corporate Affairs. It guides the adoption of Information and Communications Technologies within SADC and support the implementation of the technological aspects of the revised RISDP.
17. Communication and Public Relations Unit (CPRU)
The Communications and Public Relations Unit reports directly to the Executive Secretary and its mandate is to provide Strategic Corporate Communication and awareness of SADC programmes and Public Relations services, thereby, enabling the free flow and exchange of information within the SADC Region and beyond.