Policy & Advocacy Advocacy
Policy & AdvocacyThe COMESA Business Council as the Consultative Committee of the Business Community is authorized by the COMESA Treaty to provide a link and facilitate dialogue between the business community as well as other Organs of the Common Market (Article 18). The Treaty states that "Member States shall endeavor to adopt programmes to strengthen and promote the role of the private sector as an effective force for the development, progress and reconstruction of their respective economies". This is intended, among other purposes, to ensure:
- Inclusive participation in the formulation and implementation of regional trade policy and negotiations;
- Effective and functional public-private partnerships; and
- Trade development and promotion.
Business Policy Advocacy’s key pillars is to proactively provide evidence-based information and effectively deliver policy advocacy services for Members. This includes development of advocacy position in consultation with private sector stakeholders and presenting them at Intergovernmental Committee meetings at regional level; and providing other platforms to interface leaders of industry with highest level of policy makers in the region. The COMESA Business Forum is one of such platforms. This is an annual high level Public Private Dialogue which brings together Associations, industry leaders with high level policy makers, Ministers and Heads of States to engage on issues of private sector interest.
Therefore, through our Business and Policy advocacy pillar, we seek to promote the private sector’s active contribution in the formulation of position papers on timely constraints or competitiveness issues affecting businesses in the region- and a create a platform to directly advocate to the policy and decision makers of the region. These are implemented through the CBC Technical workgroups;
- SM-Enterprises And SM-Industries;
- Manufacturers Work Group;
- Financial Services;
- Trade Facilitation And Non-Tariff Barriers’; (Cross Cutting);
- Coalition of Services Industries.
The services driven workgroups falls under the Technical Committee on Coalition of Services Industries, while the SME and Manufacturers’ workgroup falls under the Technical Committee on Agri-business and Industry.
The objectives for Business and Policy advocacy pillar include:
- Advocating on policy positions backed by well-grounded research.
- Organizing and ensuring visibility and participation in the COMESA decision-making structures (the Policy Organs).
- Strategically influencing regional policies that establish and maintain an enabling environment for business, including removal of non-tariff barriers.
- Collecting and disseminating regular, timely and correct information and business intelligence to members.
- Networking with business organizations in order to effectively market CBC’s objectives.
- Engage Heads of States and COMESA policy organs on key strategic issues.