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Regional Collaboration Ignites Economic Growth in Southern Africa’s Medical and Pharmaceutical Sectors

In a landmark two-day Business-to-Business (B2B) and Business-to-Finance (B2F) event, the Southern African Development Community (SADC), the European Union, and the German Government successfully brought together representatives from over 59 companies spanning financial institutions, medical manufacturers, and procurement entities. 

The event, held on November 14th-15th in Gaborone, Botswana, aimed at unlocking opportunities and fostering collaborations in the medical and pharmaceutical sectors across the Southern African region.

The SADC regional B2B and B2F forum, officiated by Ms. Barbara Chibambo, Programme Coordinator SIPS at the SADC Secretariat, and Mr. José-Angel Becerra-Marta, Programme Officer at the EU Delegation in Botswana, attracted participants from more than 10 Southern African countries. 

The diverse array of attendees engaged in sessions that provided valuable insights into the input and output markets for medical and pharmaceutical products, leading to a vibrant exchange of ideas and experiences.

The core focus of the forum was on creating linkages along the value chains of the medical and pharmaceutical sectors within the SADC region. 

The event is being hailed as a pivotal moment in advancing regional integration, driving economic growth, and catalyzing transformative advancements in the medical and pharmaceutical sectors.

The Joint Action Support towards Industrialisation and the Productive Sectors in the SADC region (SIPS) played a crucial role in facilitating the B2B and B2F forum. 

With a budget exceeding EUR 20 million, the SIPS program, co-funded by the European Union in Botswana and the Bundesministerium für wirtschaftliche Zusammenarbeit und Entwicklung (BMZ), is managed by the SADC Secretariat. 

The program aims to enhance the performance and growth of the regional medical, pharmaceutical, and leather value chains.

Ms. Barbara Lopi, Head of Communication and Public Relations at SADC, expressed the importance of the event in advancing regional economic goals. 

She said that this forum is a testament to the collaborative efforts of SADC, the European Union, and the German Government in promoting economic growth and resilience in the medical and pharmaceutical sectors across our region. 

Ms. Sahar Sadid, Communications Officer at Deutsche Gesellschaft für Internationale Zusammenarbeit (GIZ) GmbH, emphasized the significance of the B2B and B2F forum in addressing regional challenges.

She stated that by bringing together key stakeholders, this event has paved the way for impactful collaborations that will address policy, regulatory, and business environment constraints in the medical and pharmaceutical value chains. 

The SIPS program, targeting the agro-processing and pharmaceutical sectors in SADC, aims to foster self-reliant economies, decrease import dependency, and build regional resilience. 

The focus on improving value chains aligns with the SADC Regional Industrialisation Strategy (RIS) 2015 – 2063 and the Regional Indicative Strategic Development Plan (RISDP) 2020 – 2030.

This story has been adopted from the SADC Secretariat, Botswana.

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