Prime Minister, Samuel Matekane will assume the role of Southern African Customs Union (SACU) chairperson in July this year.
This as Lesotho will assume the chairmanship of the SACU Summit and Council of Ministers from next month.
Lesotho will take over from Eswatini, who held the SACU chair from July 2022. The SACU chairmanship rotates among the five member states for a period of twelve months, in alphabetical order.
The impending rotation is also expected to see Finance and Development Planning Minister, Dr Retšelisitsoe Matlanyane assuming the role of chairperson of the SACU Council of Ministers, among other roles Lesotho will get as the chair.
According to Thapelo Mabote, the Prime Minister’s Press Attache, the heads of state summit which took place in Eswatini last week, was expected to receive an update from the Council of Ministers on the status of implementation of the SACU Work Programme, which is hinged on the SACU Strategic Plan.
“Summit will also reflect on other important, strategic issues, and provide guidance to the Council of Ministers on the implementation of the SACU Agenda,” Mabote said
He said Lesotho is next in line to assume the SACU chairmanship.
“The chairmanship of SACU is a simple rotation by Member States in alphabetical order. Lesotho is next in line after Eswatini and will be assuming the Chair in July 2023.”
He said article 7A (5) of the SACU Agreement 2002 provides that the SACU “Summit shall meet at least once in a year and may hold extraordinary meetings at the request of any member”.
Founded in 1910, SACU) is an African regional economic organization, and is the world’s oldest customs union.
Its members include Botswana, Lesotho, Namibia, South Africa, and Swaziland. The five member states maintain a common external tariff, share customs revenues, and coordinate policies and decision-making on a wide range of trade issues.
Matekane’s delegation at the summit included Dr Matlanyane, Minister of Trade, Industry, Business Development and Tourism, Mokhethi Shelile among other senior government officials.