Ezulwini, Eswatini, 9 September 2019 (ECA) – The 25th Meeting of the Intergovernmental Committee of Senior Officials and Experts (ICSOE) of Southern Africa on the theme “Strategies and Policies for the Integration of Micro, Small and Medium Scale Enterprises (MSMEs) in the Industrialization Process in Southern Africa ” begins tomorrow, with the key note address by the Prime Minister of the Kingdom of Eswatini, His Excellency, Ambrose Dlamini in the presence of the Hon Minister Manqoba Khumalo, the UN Resident Coordinator for Eswatini Ms Nathalie Ndongo-She and the Executive Secretary of SADC, Dr Stergomena Tax.
Under the leadership of Bureau, comprising of a Chairperson, a Vice-Chairperson and Rapparteour elected at the annual meeting and serving for a year until the next session, the meeting will provide a platform for member States and stakeholders to deliberate on MSMEs and the industrialisation process in Southern Africa.
The Bureau of the 24th ICE elected at the Session hosted by the Government of Mauritius on 18 to 19 September 2018 comprises of the Financial Secretary, Ministry of Finance and Economic Development of Mauritius as Chair, Principal Secretary of the Ministry of Commerce Industry and Trade of Eswatini as Vice Chair and the Permanent Secretary of the Ministry of Finance, Economic Planning and Development of Malawi as Rapporteur.
The meeting will bring together senior Government Officials in industrialization, regional integration, trade and SME’s from SADC member States and the representatives of SADC and COMESA Secretariats. Representatives from Civil Society Organisations, academic and research institutions, professional organisations, the UN family and other ECA Divisions will participate in the meeting.
Specifically, the 25th Session will focus on how the enterprises can be propped up, integrated and supported to anchor industrialization and address development aspirations in Southern Africa. Building on the observations and proposals of 24th ICE, this session will proffer recommendations on national and regional level strategies and attendant policies to elevate and strengthen the contribution of MSMEs to industrialization and socio-economic transformation in the region.
In addition to executing its Statutory Mandate, the 25th ICSOE will review the recommendations of the study on “Strategies and Policies for the Integration of Micro, Small and Medium Scale Enterprises (MSMEs) in the Industrialization Process in Southern Africa”
and those of the Ad Hoc Experts Group Meeting on “Harmonization of Industrialization Policies and Strategies in Southern Africa.”
The Economic Commission for Africa (ECA) will also use this opportuity to launch ECA knowledge products, including: The STEPS profile for Eswatini, the Economic Report on Africa and the Report on Assessing Regional Integration in Africa.
The ICSOE is a United Nations (UN) General Assembly policy sub-organ of the ECA Conference of African Ministers of Finance, Planning and Economic Development established to provide a forum for engaging member States’ senior officials and experts on policy and programme-related matters in each of the five (5) sub regions of Africa – North, Central, West, East and South. The ICSOE meets annually to provide guidance and to endorse the formulation and implementation of the programme of work in line with the priorities of each sub region.
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