Corridor Group panels with intercontinental committee of experts
The Walvis Bay Corridor Group (WBCG) participated in the Trade Facilitation workshop, organised by the SADC regional office of the United Nations Economic Commission for Africa (UNECA) recently.
Taking part in the panel discussion, Johny Smith, WBCG CEO discussed issues on Trans-boundary Infrastructure Investment and Financing for Economic Development in Southern Africa.
Some of the discussion points, all in an effort to provide an update on trade facilitation matters in the SADC region, included China looking at using its investment in Africa as a market penetration into the continent and why Chinese firms in Africa do more than 50% of all major construction for infrastructure.
The Deputy Executive Secretary of UNECA, Giovanie Biha, noted that countries on the continent must focus on leadership, governance, commitment and engagement through various endeavors.
She also indicated that the vision of countries could only be implemented through proper strategy and proper governance.
On the other hand, WBCG shared some insights on their business model to the rest of the meeting goers. Understanding the establishment and evolvement of the Public and Private Partnership (PPP) model and how Namibia has developed itself as an alternative trade route for seven countries adjacent to Namibia, were among the discussion points raised by WBCG.
Nozipho Mdawe from the Port Management Association of Eastern and Southern Africa (PMAESA) indicated that it is important to reduce the cost of logistics from the current 40 – 60 % of the total input / output cost to become more competitive on the African continent.
This meeting, which lasted two days, brought together stakeholders from various government and non-governmental agencies, including the private sector.