SADC Central Bank Governors will address economic challenges

Niël Terblanché

There currently exists a critical need for coordinated efforts between governments and central banks to support economic growth and employment creation in the Southern African Development Community (SADC).

While officially opening the 57th SADC Committee of Central Bank Governors’ Meeting (CCBGM) in Swakopmund, Prime Minister Saara Kuugongelwa-Amadhila highlighted the importance of monetary and macroeconomic stability in achieving future economic success.

“The issue of fiscal dominance has been topical in many of our jurisdictions in the region. But as political leaders, we have a fair appreciation of the delicacy of that independence and that the power to spend money should in some way be separated from the power to create money,” she said.

She went on to stress the need for accelerated, sustained, and inclusive growth through increased investment and deeper trade to reduce poverty and income inequalities among the SADC member countries’ populations.

“Many of our people, particularly those who live in rural and informal areas, remain financially excluded and financially marginalized,” she said,

She called on the central banks to craft innovative and secure solutions for enhanced financial inclusion and cross-border payments.

The Prime Minister also acknowledged the region’s vulnerability to natural disasters and climate variability, particularly droughts and floods. She pointed to a nine-month drought relief program that was recently launched in Namibia and said that it is important to adapt in order to mitigate climate-related shocks.

Meanwhile, Bank of Namibia Governor, Johannes !Gawaxab welcomed the participants to the meeting in Swakopmund and said the meeting is of great significance.

He noted the challenging global economic environment characterized by low growth, high inflation, high interest rates, and high debt levels.

“Our economic order is built on the pillar of monetary stability. Without a sound monetary system, investments decline, growth falters, and the aspirations of our people are jeopardized,” !Gawaxab pointed out.

He also addressed the pressing issue of climate change and its associated risks, such as droughts, fires, and floods, underscoring the importance of addressing both economic and environmental concerns.

He expressed optimism about embracing change and crafting a new strategy for the CCBGM to navigate the complexities of their roles effectively.

The various leaders at the CCBGM recognized the need for collaboration and cooperation to overcome economic challenges in the SADC region and address the effects of global economic uncertainties and climate change.

Attendees reiterated their commitment to monetary stability, financial inclusion, and sustainable economic growth was evident as they will collaborate to improve the lives of their citizens and to promote regional integration.

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