Zim at­tends first ATI meet­ing as full mem­ber

Chronicle (Zimbabwe) - - Business - Harare Bu­reau

ZIM­BABWE last week at­tended the African Trade In­sur­ance (ATI) an­nual gen­eral meet­ing as a fully fledged mem­ber fol­low­ing its ad­mis­sion into the agency last month.

To join the agency Zim­babwe got a credit of $10 mil­lion from the East­ern and South­ern African Trade and Devel­op­ment Bank and five mil­lion dol­lars from the African Devel­op­ment Bank (AfDB).

The AGM was held on the side­lines of the In­ter­na­tional Mon­e­tary Fund/World Bank meet­ings in Wash­ing­ton.

“While Zim had at­tended ATI meet­ings since 2009 this is the first time we at­tended as a fully fledged mem­ber. In pre­vi­ous in­ci­dents Zim­babwe at­tended as an ob­server,” In­dus­try and Com­merce Min­is­ter Mike Bimha told our Harare Bu­reau.

ATI is a cre­ation of Com­mon Mar­ket for East­ern and South­ern Africa and has con­trib­uted im­mensely to the devel­op­ment of those African coun­tries who are fully-fledged mem­bers.

He said an­nual gen­eral meet­ings are nor­mally held in African coun­tries and once in a while in Wash­ing­ton be­cause mul­ti­lat­eral in­sti­tu­tions are also share­hold­ers in the ATI.

In ad­di­tion, top de­ci­sion mak­ing or­gans of Comesa are also sched­uled to be­gin meet­ings to­day in An­tana­narivo, Mada­gas­car ahead of the 19th Heads of State Sum­mit on Oc­to­ber 18-19, 2016.

Top on the agenda will be dis­cus­sions on how to ad­dress chal­lenges that mem­ber states face in do­mes­ti­cat­ing de­ci­sions taken by the Coun­cil of Min­is­ters on the im­ple­men­ta­tion of Comesa re­gional in­te­gra­tion pro­grammes at the na­tional and re­gional lev­els.

Hosted un­der the theme “In­clu­sive and sus­tain­able in­dus­tri­al­i­sa­tion,” the de­bate will also ad­dress the pro­duc­tive con­straints that in­hibit in­clu­sive and sus­tain­able trans­for­ma­tion of the re­gion; from low pro­duc­tiv­ity economies that rely on ex­port of un­pro­cessed pri­mary com­modi­ties with ei­ther lit­tle or no value ad­di­tion, to high com­pet­i­tive economies that pro­duce and ex­port value added prod­ucts.

The lead­ers and ex­perts will re­view the sta­tus of mar­ket in­te­gra­tion in the re­gion with a fo­cus on how mem­ber states are im­ple­ment­ing the Comesa Free Trade area

Cur­rently, 16 out of the 19 mem­ber states have joined the FTA with DR Congo be­ing the lat­est to en­list mid this year. Comesa is a re­gional eco­nomic com­mu­nity established by treaty in 1994.

It brings to­gether 19 mem­ber states with a pop­u­la­tion of over 400 mil­lion into a co-op­er­a­tive frame­work for sus­tain­able eco­nomic growth and pros­per­ity through re­gional in­te­gra­tion.

Min­is­ter Mike Bimha

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