‘The African continent is rich in natural resources, but her most valuable assets are not just minerals and huge fertile land, but also her people, the majority of whom are youthful and resourceful.’
The comments above were spoken by the Minister of Trade and Industrialisation, Lucia Iipumbu, during her opening statement at the 53rd general session of the World Trade Center Association on Monday, April 24, 2023, in Accra, Ghana.
The event, which took place under the topic “Towards African Economic Integration and Enhanced Global Presence,” was attended by various government representatives from several African countries.
During her remarks, Iipumbu thanked the host on the great organization and the choice of an appropriate theme that speaks not only to Africa’s economic objectives, but also to the space Africa seeks in the global economy.
The theme of the Assembly, according to Iipumbu, also speaks to Namibia’s national economic objectives, such as Vision 2030, the Growth at Home Strategy, and the Harambee Prosperity Plan II, which encourages industrialization and long-term economic growth.
“As a result, Namibia is taking part under the sub-theme “Namibia: the land of many opportunities,” with an emphasis on Agriculture, Fisheries, Mining, Tourism, Energy, Logistics Infrastructure, and Real Estate, according to Iipumbu.
Meanwhile, the Industrialisation Minister stated that Namibia is ready and open for business and is working hard to attract tangible investments. The government is also diligent in establishing a favorable investment climate, which is supported by progressive regulatory and policy frameworks.
“One of Namibia’s primary differentiators as a country, and by extension as an investment destination, is the safety, security, and political stability that we have jealously guarded and maintained since our independence,” she said.
She went on to say that conducting business in Namibia ensures a robust legal system and an independent judiciary that protects property rights and investor rights, and that allows issues to be resolved through the courts or international arbitration if and when they arise.
“Namibia is a member of the Southern African Customs Union (SACU), which allows for free trade within the region and common external tariffs with other countries.” Under the Economic Partnership Agreement (EPA) between the EU and the Southern African Development Community (SADC), it also has 100% duty-free access to the European Union market. Namibia benefits from trade preferential treatment with the United States until 2025 under the African Growth and Opportunity Act (AGOA), which offers duty-free access to the U.S. market for a variety of items,” Iipumbu explained.
Photo: MIT Lucia Iipumbu