The Southern Africa Development Community. Thailand Australia Dubai UK top Car 4WD Exporter to SADC
The Southern Africa Development Community (SADC) aims to further socio-economic cooperation and integration as well as political and security cooperation among 15 southern African states. It complements the role of the African Union. It is headquatered in Gabarone, Botswana.
Members of the Southern African Development Community (SADC), comprising 14 countries, signed a Trade Protocol, which calls for the implementation of a Free Trade Area. Each country has negotiated two reduced tariff schedules. One schedule is applicable only for South Africa, and another schedule for all other SADC members. Zambia’s implementation of her offer, effective 30th April 2001, is provided to those countries that provide Zambia with the SADC reduced tariff schedule.
SADC has 15 member states, one of whose membership is currently suspended:
Angola, Botswana, Democratic Republic of the Congo – since 8 September 1997, Lesotho, Malawi
Mauritius – since 28 August 1995, Mozambique, Namibia – since 31 March 1990 (since independence), Swaziland, Tanzania, Zambia, Zimbabwe, South Africa – since 30 August 1994, Seychelles – also previously been a member of SADC from 8 September 1997 until 1 July 2004 then joined again in 2008 and Madagascar whose membership is currently suspended after the coup d’état led by the former mayor of Antananarivo Andry Rajoelina.
The reduction of tariffs to South Africa provide for delayed liberalization, while the schedule to other members provide for broader and faster access to the South Africa market. The tariff schedule applicable to SADC members, with the exception of South Africa, has three categories. Category A products are those products which go to zero-duty immediately upon implementation. The tariff for Category B products gradually goes down to zero-duty over a period of eight years, and the tariff of Category C products reaches zero-duty twelve years after implementation. Category C products are known as sensitive products, and include for Zambia meat and dairy products, tea, some flours, raw sugar, cement, textiles and clothing, and motor vehicles.
A SADC Certificate of Origin is required for each consignment of goods and is obtained from the Revenue Authority.
SADC in practice
One significant challenge is that member states also participate in other regional economic cooperation schemes and regional political and security cooperation schemes that may compete with or undermine SADC’s aims. For example, South Africa and Botswana both belong to the Southern Africa Customs Union, Zambia is a part of the Common Market for Eastern and Southern Africa, and Tanzania is a member of the East African Community.
Africa FTA (Free Trade Zone)
On Wednesday 22 October 2008, SADC joined with the Common Market for Eastern and Southern Africa and the East African Community to form the African Free Trade Zone. The leaders of the three trading blocs agreed to create a single free trade zone, the African Free Trade Zone, consisting of 26 countries with a GDP of an estimated $624bn (£382.9bn). It is hoped the African Free Trade Zone agreement would ease access to markets within the zone and end problems arising from the fact that several of the member countries belong to multiple groups.
The African Free Trade Zone effective is the realization of a dream more than a hundred years in the making, a trade zone spanning the whole African continent from Cape to Cairo and envisioned by Cecil Rhodes and other British imperialists in the 1890s. The only difference is that the African Free Trade Zone is the creation of African Countries for the mutual benefit and development of its member countries. The idea is a free trade zone spanning the whole continent from the Cape to Cairo (Cape Town in the Republic of South Africa to Cairo in Egypt).
In addition to eliminating duplicative membership and the problem member states also participating in other regional economic cooperation schemes and regional political and security cooperation schemes that may compete with or undermine each other, the African Free Trade Zone further aims to strengthen the bloc’s bargaining power when negotiating international deals.
Analysts believe that the African Free Trade Zone agreement will help intra-regional trade and boost growth.