Egypt, US presidents meet on the sidelines of the G7 summit
Egypt's Sisi meets UK Prime Minister on the sidelines of the G7 summit
Japanese newspaper hails reforms in Angola
Angolan president leaves for Japan
PM Abiy Lays Wreath at a Monument for Fallen Ethiopian Heroes
The Herald – Zimbabwe
By: Kumbirai Nhongo
A regional business council to strengthen private sector engagement in advancing integration in southern Africa which was established on August 5 is a good move that will benefit the SADC bloc.
The SADC Business Council was officially launched on August 5 ahead of the 39th SADC Summit which ran between August 17 and 18 in Dar es Salaam, United Republic of Tanzania.
SADC Executive Secretary Dr Stergomena Lawrence Tax said the business council is expected to enhance cooperation among the private sector in the region.
“The establishment of the SADC Business Council is commendable,” Dr Tax said at the SADC Council of Ministers meeting, adding that the business council “will establish closer public-private sector cooperation in the technological and economic transformation of SADC economies, and thus push forward the SADC industrialisation agenda”.
“May I call upon the private sector to utilise this platform not only for the benefit of their business interests, but also for the benefit of SADC citizens, and in doing so be a contributing partner to the SADC integration agenda.”
The private sector and other non-state actors are critical partners towards attaining inclusive and sustainable economic development as acknowledged in the SADC Industrialisation Strategy and Roadmap.
Recognising that the involvement of the private sector is critical for the successful implementation of the Industrialisation Strategy, the SADC Secretariat in collaboration with the private sector apex bodies in the region decided to establish the SADC Business Council.
Salum Shamte of Tanzania was appointed chairperson of the council. Shamte is chair of the Tanzania Private Sector Foundation.
The operationalisation of the SADC Business Council is expected to strengthen the engagement of the private sector in the SADC integration and development agenda, at borg the regional and national levels.
The decision to strengthen private sector engagement in regional integration is in line with the recommendations of the SADC Strategic Ministerial Retreat on the “SADC We Want” held in Ezulwini, the Kingdom of Eswatini, in March 2017.
The retreat agreed on measures aimed at strengthening implementation of the integration agenda and promoting inclusive participation by citizens in regional programmes.
It was noted that the lack of direct involvement by the private sector is a barrier to economic development.
Furthermore, the 37th SADC Summit held in Pretoria, South Africa, focused on exploring ways of harnessing the public and private sectors to work together to promote sustainable economic development in the region.
The theme for the 37th SADC Summit was “Partnering with the private sector in developing industry and regional value-chains”.
Public-private partnerships (PPPs) are regarded as a viable model for attracting investment for public projects by allowing governments to have more access to additional capital and off balance sheet financing.
Other initiatives to strengthen private sector engagement in regional integration include the convening of an annual SADC Industrialisation Week to popularise the strategy and garner support for its implementation.
Launched in 2016 ahead of the 36th SADC Summit in Eswatini, the Industrialisation Week provides an opportunity for member states and the SADC Secretariat to engage and network with the private sector, which is a key player in the industrialisation agenda.
Since its launch, the Industrialisation Week has been held in South Africa in August 2017, and in Namibia in July-August in 2018 as well as in Tanzania on August 5-9.
The objective of the Industrialisation Week is to popularise the strategy and identify industrialisation projects that can be implemented jointly by the public and private sectors within SADC member states.
Such projects include infrastructure development, regional trade and industrial capacity.
The main focus is on three spheres —strengthening value chains, corridor development and enhancing infrastructure.
Regarding value chain projects, priority is placed on mining and mineral beneficiation, agro-processing and pharmaceuticals.
Corridor development involves various enabling factors such as standards and quality infrastructure, trade facilitation and transport infrastructure.
With regard to infrastructure development, special focus is on water and energy projects.
The 39th SADC Summit which saw President John Pombe Joseph Magufuli of Tanzania assuming the rotating SADC chair from his Namibian counterpart Hage Geingob, ran under the theme “A Conducive Environment for Inclusive and Sustainable Industrial Development, Increased Intra-Regional Trade and Job Creation”.
Industrialisation is a top priority for Southern Africa, and since 2014 all SADC summits have focused on how the region can attain industrial development.
The New Times – Rwanda
By: Caroline Numuhire
Each era has its own blessings and struggles. Although our fathers and those before them did not benefit from the spectacular technological miracles, they were lucky on so many points and one of them worth highlighting is that they had a physically active life.
They had to work in their fields or walk long distances to hunt or look after their livestock. And it would be unfair to ignore that numerous types of infectious diseases that stole infantile and juvenile lives of the time.
However, their TV and burger-free lifestyle allowed their generation to live longer.
Now things have changed; for us in the 21st century, it sounds almost heroic for one to walk from one corner of the city to another. Whoever does so expect to be praised for their courage or they are considered too poor to afford any form of modern transport.
What used to be a normal way of life has become either a chore or an act of bravery. Our generation faces a different issue. We do have very intellectually stimulating lives and that has led us to have a high number of people who live a physically passive life.
I am sure my great-grandfather would be amazed that one can make a living by just seating behind a bright rectangular screen and earn enough money to build a house or buy a car. Although today might be the best time to be alive in human history, this blessing does not come without consequences.
We are a busy generation. Our work styles which do not necessarily produce the same visible results as our ancestors’ might have offered at the same time an excuse to hide.
Since I can tell everyone that I am busy because they will see me seated in front of my computer, they will have no other choice than believing me. But what really keeps us awake at night? Are we busy producing the highest performance we can ever reach with our given potential? Or are busy leading passive lives?
When you look closely at what keeps us busy and our productivity rates, there is a considerable mismatch. Our socially accepted busyness sometimes serves an excuse to look away from things that truly matter in our lives.
Busyness has taken away the accountability we have, not only towards others but also towards ourselves. My fear is that we have found the right formula to exclude others to keep us accountable since we are in the ‘We mind our businesses’ society. The danger to that is that we can easily hide and live average passive lives.
Lives where an 8AM-5PM single income job is a norm, where we are failing ourselves to test the extent of our limits. By living a passive life, I mean an existence where we usually do what is externally acceptable to fit in society and not unavoidably maximizing the potential the Creator of Universe has put in us, each one of us. Please do not get me wrong, the issue is not just having one job, because that could be enough. The challenge is the mindset that drives us to tolerate what is average versus what could be excellent.
And chasing excellence isn’t that boring. It is an adventure and an invitation to discover how great you could be. It can be starting a side hustle, developing talent and always learning from the best. Being great can also be going back to school and upgrade the skills that will serve you or it can be recognizing that you are already doing enough and need to relax more. It truly depends on one’s felt able to create wonders.
For some, these are the most productive years of life that will never be gained back and that’s where the lie lies. We believe that we still have time. Time to dream, to achieve, to eat healthy, to work out, to design and finally achieve meaningful lives.
We do not feel the urgency of starting now because we believe that tomorrow belongs to us. What I realized is that by trying to improve one side of life be it work, income, health, spirituality, or relationships, we end up discovering that it is all inter-connected and an active life nurtures a desire to longevity. Because when we start testing the very good side of life, we want it to last forever.
If our grandfathers’ generation was blessed with a healthy lifestyle, we are now observing an increased number in our parents’ age group who are suffering from non-communicate diseases especially high blood pressure and diabetes.
It’s a situation I personally perceive as an alert, a calling to us to study the trends between our three generations so we can smarty plan to live active lives again. I do believe that a small goal such as starting your day with a30-minutes jogging could not only improve your health but if tied to a purpose, one single step at a time could also lead one to a fulfilled and active life.