The Executive Secretary of SADC – H.E. Dr. Stergomena Lawrence Tax and Head of the EU Delegation to Botswana and SADC – H.E. Ambassador Alexander Baum, have agreed to further promote and expand SADC-EU development cooperation through EDF10 and EDF11. This was an important feature of the quarterly SADC-EU high-level meeting held on 17th February,2016. The two sides agreed to accelerate implementation of the programmes and projects under the 10th EDF and identify new ones under the 11th EDF.
Regional Economic Cooperation continues to make progress through implementation of the 10th EDF Regional Economic Integration Support (REIS) programme and the Trade-related Facility (TrF). These two programmes seek to advance implementation of the SADC Protocol on Trade, the SADC Protocol on Finance and Investment, negotiations and implementation of the SADC EPA and overall implementation of the regional trade agenda. The two sides agreed to act swiftly to finalize formulation of new economic cooperation programmes under the 11th EDF. They further noted that the ongoing Regional Political Cooperation (RPC) programme has been instrumental in facilitating election observation; supporting mediation missions; enhancing disaster preparedness and response; and strengthening the regional response to trafficking in persons.
Under the 11th EDF, the two sides will utilise the SADC Sub-Regional Envelope of 90 million Euros to implement programmes in the areas of Regional Agricultural Policy; Capacity Development; Regional Economic Integration, Regional Political Cooperation and Regional Natural Resource Management. Opportunities for programming will also be explored under Infrastructure and Cross-Regional funding Envelopes, focusing on: Energy, ICT, Transport Facilitation, Trans-boundary Water Management, Wildlife Management, Migration, Fisheries and Maritime Security.
During the same meeting, Dr. Tax and Ambassador Baum undertook to accelerate implementation of the outcome of the October 2015 SADC-EU Ministerial Political Dialogue.
Dr. Tax was accompanied by the Deputy Executive Secretary – Regional Integration, Dr.Thembinkosi Mhlongo, the Deputy Executive Secretary – Finance and Administration, Mrs. Emilie A. Mushobekwa, Directors, the Office of the ES and officers responsible for Development Cooperation and Resource Mobilisation. Ambassador Baum was accompanied by the Head of Regional Cooperation, Mr.Jocelin Cornet and officials responsible for Economic Cooperation, Political Cooperation, Infrastructure and Capacity Development programmes.