The Southern African Development Community (Sadc) has noted that industrialisation in the regional trade bloc has been weak with intra-regional trade at 22%, despite abundance of resources. The Sadc Industrial Week (SIW) declaration draft report observes that member States, Malawi inclusive, have not industrialised and achieved structural transformation from commodity-based economies.
The forum observed that the region must address infrastructure shortcomings, mitigate trade barriers, promote regional innovation and research development. The forum has since declared regional value chains, small and medium enterprises (SMEs), local development, gender and youths, finance for infrastructure and industrialisation as barriers to trade and trade facilitation and research, innovation and technology development.
The SIW forum therefore urged member States to introduce duty-free systems on import of raw and packaging materials, provide incentives for local manufacturing, establish pooled procurement on raw materials and medical equipment to promote local pharmaceutical manufacturing, among other suggested resolves.