Government has pledged to deploy all the necessary efforts and play a positive role to ensure progress on establishment of the African Union (AU) Financial Institutions (AUFIS).
Zambia is expectant that the establishment of African union financial institutions would contribute significantly to the economic development, stability, and prosperity of the continent, according to the Finance and National Planning Minister, Situmbeko Musokotwane.
He said this on Wednesday at the consultative meeting on the establishment of African Union (AU) financial institutions in Lusaka in a speech read for him by Secretary to the Treasury, Felix Nkulukusa.
Musokotwane was confident that benefits would accrue to the African people including the youth, women and the disadvantaged.
“This consultative meeting provides an opportunity for the continent to begin addressing the long-standing technical bottlenecks of establishing the African union financial institutions, which continues to constrain progress towards the establishment of AUFIS.
“The focus of the meeting fits very well with Zambia’s development aspirations, which seeks to deepen the country’s economic and financial integration with our neighbours and the continent at large,” he said.
Musokotwane also pledged Zambia’s continued participation in regional schemes to promote continental economic amalgamation.
He stressed that Zambia viewed regional economic communities as building blocks to the attainment of continental socio-economic integration.
At the same meeting, Bank of Zambia (BOZ) Deputy Governor-Administration, Rekha Mhango, observed that financing to exploit the continent’s potential was either unavailable or too expensive to realise its growth objectives.
Mhango also noted that the consultative meeting’s timing was crucial due to the African Continental Free Trade Area’s (AfCFTA) entry into force, aiming to eliminate trade barriers and boost intra-Africa trade.
She added that the establishment of African Union financial institutions was vital, supporting the realization of AfCFTA benefits.
“We are elated to note that, despite challenges, notable progress has been made, such as the adoption of macroeconomic convergence criteria to guide the move toward harmonization of fiscal and monetary policies and convergence of our financial systems,” she said.
Meanwhile, AU Director, Djamel Ghrib, pointed out that the establishment of African Union financial institutions would accelerate the implementation of the African Union Economic Community Treaty, promoting socio-economic development and addressing challenges posed by globalisation.
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