Southern African Development Community

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Southern African Development Community
Image:Flag of SADC.svg Image:Sadc logo.gif
(In Detail) (In Detail)
Headquarters Gaborone, Botswana
Membership 14 member states
Working languages English, French and Portuguese

April 1, 1980
August 17, 1992
Executive Secretary Tomaz Augusto Salomão
Official Website

The Southern African Development Community (SADC) is an organization that aims to promote Southern African regional cooperation in economic development.


[edit] History

The Southern African Development Coordination Conference (SADCC), which was the forerunner of the Southern African Development Community (SADC), was formed in Lusaka, Zambia, on 1 April 1980, following the adoption of the Lusaka Declaration (entitled Southern Africa: Towards Economic Liberation) by the nine founding member states.

The Declaration and Treaty establishing the Community, which replaced the Coordination Conference, was signed at the Summit of Heads of State or Government on 17 August 1992, in Windhoek, Namibia.

[edit] Elections

The SADC Principles and Guidelines Governing Democratic Elections, adopted in August 2004 by SADC countries, govern conduct of elections. There is concern that these principles are not being adhered to in Zimbabwe for the 2005 parliamentary elections. [1]

[edit] Member States

██ SADC-only members ██ SADC and SACU members

SADC had nine founding member states, all joining on 1 April 1980, namely:

Several more states have joined since, bringing the current number of member states to 14:

Seychelles also joined on 8 September 1997, but left on 1 July 2004. On 2 December 2005, however, it appeared that the Seychelles would rejoin some time in 2006. [2]

Rwanda applied, but its application was rejected because of procedural omissions [3].

[edit] Aims of the SADC

The main aims of the Southern African Development Community are:

  • To harmonise the political and socio-economic policies and plans of the member states.
  • To mobilise the people of the region and their institutions to take initiatives to develop economic, social and cultural ties across the region, and to participate fully in the implementation of the programmes and projects of the SADC.
  • To create appropriate institutions and mechanisms for the mobilisation of requisite resources for the implementation of the programmes and the operations of the SADC and its institutions.
  • To develop policies aimed at the progressive elimination of obstacles to free movement of capital and labour, goods and services, and of the peoples of the region generally among member states.
  • To promote the development of human resources.
  • To promote the development, transfer and mastery of technology.
  • To improve economic management and performance through regional cooperation.
  • To promote the coordination and harmonisation of the international relations of member states.
  • To secure international understanding, cooperation and support, mobilise the inflow of public and private resources in the region.
  • To develop such other activities as member states may decide in furtherance of the objectives of SADC.

[edit] Challenges and Approaches

Before 2001 the countries forming the SADC have identified many common challenges. These challenges are divided into sectors as follows:

  • Environment and land management
  • Inland fisheries, forestry and wildlife
  • Tourism
  • Culture, information and sport
  • Marine fisheries and resources
  • Finance and investment
  • Human resources development
  • Industry and trade
  • Employment and labour
  • Food, agriculture and natural resources
  • Water conservation and distribution
  • Transport and communication
  • Legal affairs
  • Transport, communications and meteorology
  • Legal affairs
  • Health
  • Mining
  • Crop production

The SADC has, as of August 2001, restructured and adopted a centralised approach in running the integration and development of its 14 member countries. The aim of decentralising or internationalising the sectors was for SADC to guide and coordinate regional policies and programmes on a country-by-country basis.

With the restructuring of SADC sectors since 2001, SADC has now approached a more centralised approach through which the sectors are grouped into four Directorates, namely;

  • Trade, Industry, Finance and Investment
  • Infrastructure and Services
  • Food, Agriculture and Natural Resources
  • Social and Human Development and Special Programmes

All these Directorates are based in the SADC Head Quarters in Gaborone, Botswana. With the previous decentralised strategy, each member country was allocated a sector to coordinate. The responsibility for the country charged with particular sectors involved proposing sector policies, development strategies, setting priorities, and processing projects for inclusion in the sectoral programme, monitoring progress and reporting to the SADC Head Quarters. Sectors were allocated to each member country based on the country's perceived strengths and opportunities.

The following is an illustration of how sectors were allocated to each member country based on strengths and opportunities found in that particular country.

Country Sector responsibility Strengths
Angola Energy Angola is rich in mineral resources e.g. oil
Botswana Agricultural research Botswana is mainly a farming country.
Lesotho Environment and land management Lesotho is mountainous with many rivers
Malawi Inland fisheries, forestry and wildlife Lake Malawi
Mauritius Tourism Mauritius is essentially a well known tourism country
Mozambique Culture, information and sport Mozal Transport, communications and meteorology
Namibia Marine fisheries and resources
South Africa Finance and investiment Advanced medical facilities
Swaziland Human resources development
Tanzania Industry and trade
Zambia Employment and labour Mining
Zimbabwe Food agriculture and natural resources Crop production

The centralised or global strategy has seen all these sectors grouped into four Directorates and based in SADC Head Quarters in Gaborone, Botswana, as already indicated. The four Directorates are the core activities of the SADC headquarters. The previous decentralised policy appeared to promote regional integration and to ensure that each country's strengths and opportunities are explored. The previous system also appeared to have been working considering that a country that is lacking in a particular area can rely on the other country that has strengths on that area. Say for example, if Swaziland is experiencing water shortages, it can source water supply from Lesotho with its large rivers.

When SADC followed the decentralised approach it reasoned along the following lines:

  1. To offload work done at the SADC Head Quarters to the 14 member countries, allowing the SADC Secretariat time to focus on critical issues.
  2. To give each member country a sense of control and a feel of belonging to the community by giving responsibilities in each member country.
  3. The SADC also realised that there is flexibility in the decentralisation of SADC functions, more rapid local responsiveness and attuning the Community to local conditions of each member country.

Decentralisation ensured that the decisions taken are influenced by conditions and cultures of each member country. Decisions taken are often informed decisions. Nevertheless on the operational level the decentralised country by country sectors was too complex to manage and coordinate. Projects were initiated but in most of the cases were not started or after started they were not completed.

The decentralised approach also involved large sums of money that was not always available. With the decentralised approach, member countries were, instead of integrating became more polarised since each country was focusing in developing sectors in their own countries and saw little benefits in working with other member countries. With the decentralised approach, in reality and practice, there was no integration. These are reasons that forced SADC to re-look the decentralised approach and eventually restructured itself by 2001.

The main reasons why the SADC centralised its functions are the following:

  • SADC wanted to facilitate coordination. SADC saw the decentralised 14 sectors dispersed in the 14 member countries difficult to coordinate.
  • To ensure that decisions are consistent within the entire SADC system. When decisions are dispersed around 14 countries, country managers can make decisions at variance with those at the SADC Head Quarters in Botswana. Centralisation of functions reduces this risk.
  • By centralising all the functions in SADC Head Quarters in Botswana, the Secretariat may find it easier to speed up the integration process without circulating document decisions to various dispersed sectors.

[edit] Economic achievements

With the present centralised strategy, and through the Regional Indicative Strategic Development Plan a strategy has been mapped out that would allow member countries’ economies to grow steadily over the years to reach the targeted 7% growth rate. This strategy centres on the twin pillars of good economic governance and good political governance.

Already some Member countries are emerging as continental leaders in terms of macroeconomic policies and poverty reduction strategies as well as institution building and these are: Botswana, Mauritius, Namibia and South Africa. In terms of the economic performance within the Region, Angola is leading the way with a 13.8% growth rate, followed by Mozambique with 8% and Tanzania with 6.2%. Improvements in growth rates have also been witnessed in Lesotho, Namibia and South Africa.

On the Public Index Rankings, as contained in the Global Competitiveness Report, four of SADC's member states ranked among the top ten, with Botswana ranking first. The three others are South Africa, Mauritius and Tanzania (Ramsamy, 2003).

[edit] General information

SADC is one of the pillars of the African Economic Community.

African Economic Community
blocs (REC)
Area (km²) Population GDP (PPP) ($US) Member
in millions per capita
AEC 29,910,442 853,520,010 2,053,706 2,406 53
ECOWAS 5,112,903 251,646,263 342,519 1,361 15
ECCAS 6,667,421 121,245,958 175,928 1,451 11
SADC 9,882,959 233,944,179 737,335 3,152 14
EAC 1,763,777 97,865,428 104,239 1,065 3
COMESA 12,873,957 406,102,471 735,599 1,811 20
IGAD 5,233,604 187,969,775 225,049 1,197 7
266,000 273,008  ?  ? N/A 4
Area (km²) Population GDP (PPP) ($US) Member
in millions per capita
CEMAC 1 3,020,142 34,970,529 85,136 2,435 6
SACU 1 2,693,418 51,055,878 541,433 10,605 5
UEMOA 1 3,505,375 80,865,222 101,640 1,257 8
UMA 2 5,782,140 84,185,073 491,276 5,836 5
Agadir 1,703,910 126,066,286 513,674 4,075 4
1 Economic bloc inside a pillar REC

2 Proposed for pillar REC, but objecting participation
3 The Sahrawi Arab Democratic Republic (SADR) is a
signatory to the AEC, but not participating in any bloc yet

4 Majority under military occupation by Morocco; some
administered by the SADR

██ smallest value among the blocs compared ██ largest value among the blocs compared During 2004. Source: CIA World Factbook 2005, IMF WEO Database

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[edit] See also

[edit] References

  • John McCormick, The European Union: Politics and Policies. Westview Press: Boulder, Colorado, 2004.
  • Ramsamy, Prega 2003 Global partnership for Africa. Presentation at The human rights conference on global partnerships for Africa’s development, Gaborone: SADC

[edit] External links

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