About CBC


COMESA Business Council

CBC is the recognized Business Member Organization, established as a private sector institution of COMESA. We represent the interests of businesses sectors at a regional level.  The services provided go beyond advocacy, to actively promote business participation in regional integration, investment and global trade. This is done by facilitating the growth of strong business synergies, the development of business opportunities, business alliances, legislative and strategic advocacy. We provide custom tailored services that are driven by both industry and enterprise interests.

Our Approach

Our Story

As a member, you benefit from the following;

  • Advocacy excellence in the region – influence decisions at the highest levels of policy decision makers in COMESA.
  • Regional brand recognition as a business through CBC
  • Market intelligence and analysis to inform trade, investment and joint venture decisions.
  • Increased partnerships in regional and global markets.
  • Business facilitation in regional and global markets through trade promotion, linkages and advisory services.
  • Technical capacity development and Industry collaboration of CBC memberships for efficiency and sustainability of enterprises and associations.


CBC is established as one of the eight organs of COMESA. To provide a link and facilitate dialogue between the business community and other interest groups and other organs of the Common Market. CBC shall:

  1. Be responsible for ensuring that the interests of the business community and other interest groups in the Common Market are taken into consideration by the organs of the Common Market.
  2. Be responsible for monitoring the implementation of the provisions of chapter 23 (Development of Private Sector) and 24 of the Treaty (Women in Development and Business) and make recommendations to the Intergovernmental Committee.
  3. Consult and receive reports from other interest groups.
  4. Take part in the meetings of the Technical Committees and may make recommendations to the Intergovernmental Committee (COMESA Treaty Article 7 and 18).

The development of the private sector undertakings by COMESA Members States that CBC is responsible for monitoring are:

  1. Creation of an Enabling Environment for the Private Sector: The Member States agree to provide an enabling environment for the private sector to take full advantage of the Common Market.
  2. Strengthening the Private Sector: The Member States shall endeavor to adopt programs to strengthen and promote the role of the private sector as an effective force for the development, progress and reconstruction of their respective economies.
  3. Co-operation among Chambers of Commerce and Other Business Organizations: The Member States undertake to co-operate in promoting common measures to ensure the strengthening of linkages among chambers of commerce (COMESA Treaty Chapter 23, Article 151-153).


Building Regional, Going Global.


To become the leading private sector organization in Africa, that promotes competitive and interconnected industries to actively participate in regional and global markets through advocacy, business facilitation and enterprise development.

  • The core values that guide our behavior and actions are:
  • People: Adhere to the highest professional standards
  • Integrity: Trust, transparency and accountability
  • Ownership: For the members, by the members
  • Collaboration: Shared vision, clarity of roles and responsibilities
  • Service: Representative and Inclusive


Business Policy Advocacy - Influencing policy is at the heart of what we do

  • Addressing key obstacles to business growth, through diagnostic instruments
  • Ensuring private sector consultation on policy processes
  • Preparing evidence based position papers
  • Ensuring political will to initiate, implement policy and institutional reforms for a more competitive business environment
  • Conveying the private sector’s concerns and issues in major policy areas
  • Drafting model policy bills based on position papers for intervention at policy level
  • Streamlining regulatory and administrative measures affecting entrepreneurial activity
  • Stimulating actions to improve the overall business environment
  • Promoting the public-private dialogue and partnership
  • Establish a program of technical experts as a business outreach scheme on addressing day to day challenges in doing business.

BUSINESS FACILITATION SERVICESbusiness support for private sector’s access to regional and global markets. 

  • Raising enterprises’ awareness of market opportunities by improving access to information
  • Developing entrepreneurial efficiency and enterprise competitiveness programs
  • Establishing flagship trade promotion programs in goods and services, facilitating business linkages
  • Structuring dedicated trainings on product innovation and quality enhancement
  • Establishment and maintenance of an in-depth online information product that provides business information, market intelligence, information and access requirements within the COMESA region.
  • Stimulating the understanding of regional and international market access conditions and regulations
  • Promoting good business practices

Membership and Communication servicesStrengthen collaboration with CBC members for improved effectiveness

  • CBC customer care relations desk- a platform for business to channel specific interests through the CBC which in turn will lobby to the various levels of policy makers within the region
  • CBC BizNet- Market Hub: Your business linkages and intelligence platform
  • Promote the CBC brand as an opportunity to belong to a recognized and respected regional apex body for the private sector, which would contribute to reinforcing corporate image and credibility vis-à-vis their own constituencies
  • CBC newsbriefs and online dialogue; Ensure regular contribution, debate and participation in formulation of position papers to be brought up to the policy and decision makers, by providing their own inputs   based on their experience in the ground.
  • Strengthen workgroups with continuous communication, information and intelligence on market trends
  • Increased exposure to regional and international market opportunities, through active participation in trade events organized by the CBC as well as through information channels to be developed by CBC such as an interactive website, a CBC Directory, newsletters, etc
  • Access to up-to-date and first-hand information on trade related issues of particular relevance to them.
  • Principal Members- these include private sector national business associations representing various sectors of national economies of member states and other corporate companies. The annual subscription fee for principal members is USD 2000.
  • Honorary / Corporate Members – these include corporate companies and other interest groups upon admission by the General Assembly after application. The annual subscription fees for this category is USD 5000.
  • Associate Members - these are recognized national business associations, investment and Export promotion agencies and trade support institutions, other associations directly or indirectly related to private sector issues. This category also includes regional private sector associations. The annual membership fee for Associate Members is USD 2500
  • Emerging Businesses – these are business startups or Small or Medium Enterprise. The annual membership for this category is USD 1000.

All registered members of CBC form the General Assembly that holds once a year. All members receive a CBC Membership of Recognition.

  • Agro-Industry
  • Manufacturers Workgroup
  • Tourism Services
  • Micro Small and Medium Enterprises
  • Digital Financial Services
  • Tobacco Growers
  • Transporters and Logistics Services Industries
  • Digital Services
  • Coalition of Services Industries
  • Trade Facilitation and NTBs

  • CBC BIZNET MARKETHUB: An online easy to use, self registration data base that gives you information on over 3,000 companies- distributers, suppliers and buyers from across the COMESA region. Visit: http://biznet.comesabusinesscouncil.org/
  • MADE in COMESA: A business intelligence platform that helps you helps you make the right decision about where to trade, set up shop and invest. We analyse, inform and advise you on trade and product trends in the region! Visit: http://madeincomesa.opendataforafrica.org/
  • COMESA TOURISM HERITAGE HANDBOOK: An online and hardcopy tool that supports international and regional tourists to know the sites and sounds of the COMESA countries. You can put together regional tourism packages using the handbook. Visit; http://biznet.comesabusinesscouncil.org/Handbook/index.html
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