COMESA Summit applauds Tunisia, Somalia for joining regional bloc

Lusaka, Zambia (PANA) – The 20th Common Market for Eastern and Southern Africa (COMESA) Summit ended in Lusaka on Thursday, commending Tunisia and Somalia for becoming new members of the regional bloc.

In a statement delivered at the end of the Summit by President of Madagascar and Chairperson of the COMESA Authority, Hery Rajaonarimampianina, the Summit praised Tunisia and Somalia for the trust they have shown in COMESA by joining the ranks of full members, thereby raising the number of the regional bloc’s Member States to 21 and making COMESA the largest integrated area on the continent.

The two-day Summit which met under the theme “COMESA: Towards Digital Economic Integration”, admitted Tunisia and Somalia as new members of the bloc.

It also appointed Zambia’s former Deputy Finance Minister, Chileshe Kapwepwe, as COMESA Secretary General, replacing Sindiso Ngwenya whose term of office came to an end.

The summit paid a glowing tribute to Ngwenya for his dedication, zeal and self-sacrifice that made the organisation achieve the recorded results.

“The expertise and institutional memory that he represents, most definitely constitute assets that cannot leave us indifferent. The road ahead is long and fraught with numerous challenges that need to be addressed, if we are to realise our vision. He, therefore, can be a source of inspiration, not only to safeguard the acquis, but above all to spur COMESA to greater heights,” Rajaonarimampianina stated.

On the security situation in the region, the summit commended the efforts made by Member States to restore and maintain peace, in particular, the normalisation of relations between Ethiopia and Eritrea following the signing of the peace agreement between the two countries.

“This underscores the importance of acknowledging the role that our countries, under the leadership of the African Union and other regional institutions, can play to ensure stability, peace and security, which are the prerequisites for the economic and social development of our countries,” President Rajaonarimampianina said.
-0- PANA MM/VAO 19July2018

19 july 2018 20:23:12

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