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Seychelles signatory to landmark tripartite initiative

Seychelles signatory to landmark tripartite initiative (Forimmediaterelease.net) The Seychelles government has signed a declaration launching negotiations for the establishment of a single integrated market for the 26 countries that make up the Common Market for East and Southern Africa (COMESA), East African Community (EAC), and the Southern African Development Community (SADC).

The signing followed the conclusion of the 2nd COMESA-EAC-SADC Tripartite Summit held on June 12 in Johannesburg, South Africa, under the theme “Deepening Regional Integration," where a Seychelles delegation lead by Seychelles Vice President Danny Faure participated in strategy discussions and endorsed the plan of action.

“This landmark initiative is an important step towards simplifying trade in the region and easing some of the administrative obligations for countries like Seychelles who are members of more than one of these regional economic communities,” said Vice President Faure who is also the Minister for Finance and Trade.

“The biggest portion of Seychelles’ regional trade is done in the SADC region, accounting for 19% of all our imports. The creation of a single market will create avenues and opportunities for local businesses, consumers, and Seychellois people by providing access to cheaper products and raw materials, effectively contributing to lowering the cost of living and doing business,” Vice President Faure added. The Vice President has also called upon fellow member states to prioritize trade in goods as the most effective means of boosting development in the region and the wider African continent.

The creation of a tripartite free trade area will provide for the creation of a larger, integrated market with a combined population of approximately 700 million people, effectively creating the largest free trade area in the world, which in turn will encourage intraregional trade by creating a wider market, increased investment flows, enhanced competitiveness, and will develop cross-regional infrastructure.

This initiative is also the response to a call from the AU for Regional Economic Communities (RECs) to harmonize and better coordinate policies and programs, thereby contributing to poverty reduction, economic growth, and sustainable development for the continent.

The Seychelles delegation consisted of the Seychelles Foreign Minister, Mr. Jean-Paul Adam; Resident High Commissioner to SADC and COMESA, Mr. Joseph Nourrice; and technical staff from the Ministry of Foreign Affairs and Ministry of Finance and Trade.

MEDIA CONTACT: Alain St. Ange, CEO, Seychelles Tourism Board, Email: alain.s@seychelles.com

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