The Acting Director for the Directorate for Infrastructure and Services at the SADC Secretariat, Mr. Phera Ramoeli briefed the media at the Department of International Relations and Cooperation, in Pretoria, South Africa on the 16th August 2017, ahead of the Summit of Heads of State and Government.
Mr Ramoeli told the media that Infrastructure development as espoused in the SADC Revised Regional Indicative Strategic Development Plan (RISDP) 2015 – 2020 is instrumental in facilitating industrialisation, intra-regional trade and economic growth which ultimately lead to poverty eradication.
“The SADC region has identified the development of infrastructure and services as critical in promoting and sustaining regional economic development, industrialisation, trade and investment,” said Mr Ramoeli, noting that infrastructure marks a point of departure for deepening regional economic integration and unlock opportunities for trade, development and enhanced global competitiveness.
To attract resources and investments in energy and water projects on 12-13 July 2017 the SADC Secretariat and the Kingdom of Swaziland hosted the High Level Ministerial Resource Mobilisation Workshop and Energy Investment Forum which identified measures needed to eliminate barriers inhibiting development and progress on implementation of energy and water infrastructure projects.
On the meteorology programme which also falls under the Directorate of Infrastructure, Mr Ramoeli said the establishment of the SADC Climate Services Centre (CSC) will help to generate quality, reliable climate information and connect the Centre to the global meteorological system.
Infrastructure projects undertaken and coordinated by the SADC Secretariat in the region are guided by the SADC Regional Infrastructure Development Master Plan (RIDMP) which is designed to achieve efficient, seamless and cost-effective cross-boundary infrastructure networks to enable economic development, regional integration and poverty alleviation. The RIDMP focuses on the six infrastructure areas that constitute the SADC Regional Infrastructure Programme namely; Energy, Tourism (Trans-frontier Conservation Areas), Transport, ICT, Meteorology and Trans-boundary Water.