President Professor Peter Mutharika has urged the Southern Africa Development Community (SADC) member states on the need to redouble efforts to allocate local resources for investment in infrastructure if it were to scale up implementation of agreed priority projects.
Mutharika said this during the opening of the 34th Summit of the Head of States and Government of the SADC where he handed over the Chairmanship to President Robert Mugabe at Elephant Hills Hotel in Victoria Falls, Zimbabwe.
“Of particular concern is the urgent need to address power shortfalls in the region, and provision of trade related infrastructure, namely; transport infrastructure, border facilitation measures and elimination of notorious Non Tariff Barriers (NTBs),” said Mutharika.
Mutharika also urged the member states to establish own funding mechanisms to ensure that priority interventions are adequately funded.
“The important thing is to ensure that such priority interventions are adequately resourced. It is for this reason that more efforts need to be targeted towards the establishment of the SADC Regional Development Fund. I am more than convinced that the Fund will help us mobilise own resources which will assist us to achieve our dream of a ‘common future’,” Mutharika remarked.
Mutharika also presented prizes to the regional winners of the 2014 SADC secondary school essay competitions gone to Swaziland, Zimbabwe and Tanzania winners) and media awards to winners in Zimbabwe, Zambia, Mozambique and Namibia.
Zimbabwe scored three winners in this year’s competition.
As new chair, President Mugabe would now be chairing the summit of Heads of State and Government, council of ministers meetings, standing committee of senior officials’ meetings and sectoral meetings.