Thus, it is important for African social movement analysts and activists to revisit and revive the very different, strategic objectives but, where necessary, refine and improve the means and methods that informed the long-standing visions and plans for African developmental cooperation and integration. Assessing Regional Integration in Africa (ARIA I, ARIA II, and ARIA III). One of the critical factors of success in regional integration is having everybody on board. Until June this year, Nigeria and Benin were holding out. You have also advocated for a bottom-up approach to development. The AU has really made great strides, particularly in the continental free trade area. The Strategic Aims of Regional Cooperation and Integration in AfricaDot KeetAlternative Information and Development Centre AIDC Regional Briefing 1/2004. But the now-hegemonic or dominant view at different levels of power and spheres of influence, in Africa and internationally, is that 'Regional Integration is A Good Thing'. The ambitious and transformative aims outlined above clearly require public planning and regulation. Integrate Africa and the RISF are ambitious initiatives aimed at accelerating the free flow of goods, services, people and capital in Africa. And the functional significance of such borders can be reduced through the expansion, deepening and increasing significance of cross-border programs and activities. What is the current state of integration? Such differentiated trade arrangements would, in Southern Africa, have to ensure, above all, that there are gradual, assymetrical and even non-reciprocal processes of market opening between South Africa and the other member countries. Regional integration is a process in which countries enter into a regional agreement in order to enhance regional cooperation through regional structure and rules. In pursuance of the objectives of regional integration and rapid socio-economic development of Africa, the OAU Summit of Heads of State and Government adopted the Lagos Plan of Action in 1980. Also, our budget is approved by AU member states. These would create larger markets, be more encouraging to foreign investors and more favourable to the operations of global corporations, as well as being "stepping stones" for such regions to fit into and reinforce the integration of the globalising capitalist economy [see AIDC Regional Briefing 2. These preferential measures could provide the productive resource base and rising production-and-consumption levels for the majority, and thus create a self-reinforcing development dynamic, a continuous upward development spiral for the whole. For example, when we deliver in agriculture, we also look at water, energy, land, etc. There are, however, many overlapping 'regional integration' groupings in Africa pursuing differing and even competing programs, particularly in the trade sphere. The overall strategic objective of re-grouping African countries and (re)integrating the continent was, from the start, a fundamental response to the effects of colonialism, and intrinsic to African struggles against colonialism and against neo-colonialism after 'independence'. The best way to solve the energy problem is to have decentralized energy services at the local community level, managed by local communities. Every year we need to create 20 million jobs. This is what I call bottom-up. Are there often tensions between regional institutions and national governments? So, if we assist 100,000 SMEs, we can achieve that agenda of 1 million jobs. 'Above all, it would require variable tariff structures and self-selected rates of tariff reduction /retention by participating countries, taking into account their different commercial, production and other capacities and economic, social and other vulnerabilities. therefore fills a gap in the Africa Regional Integration Index, which could not forecast the implementation of an integration programme with reference to the objectives, deadlines and implementation action plans fixed. Such practices would all contribute towards higher levels, more evenly spread and equitable development across the region. Their reactions are not only against the national programs and performance of their governments and their various formal - but largely paper - regional integration plans, but they are skeptical even about the very idea of regional or continental integration. However, we want to harness best practices regarding SME creation, incubation centres, protection of intellectual property, financing of SMEs by national development banks, conducive environment, incentives, and others. Extraction of minerals, extraction of agricultural produce, and so on. However, there are still lessons to be drawn from successful . In this model, equity is both the base and engine of development, as well as the expression and guarantee of human rights, human security and regional stability. achieving an economic union. In this context, the internationally promoted principle of common but differentiated responsibilities according to differing capacities would be expressed, for example, in the greater financial contribution required of South Africa to regional development funds and to other compensatory measures and redistributive mechanisms designed to redress the regional geographical and social imbalances and inequities. October 19, 2004. by Chipo Muvezwa – SANF 04 no 87. Similarly, with a large number of differing countries interacting in a comprehensive many-sided integration program, it is not always feasible - or necessarily desirable - to simply incorporate them all, in all sectors, at the same rate and to the same degree within uniform regional arrangements. Although based on encouraging market forces and foreign investment, this has a considerable role for governments and includes some seemingly positive economic, security and 'governance' elements. According to the perspective of the Yearbook Monitoring Regional Integration in Southern Africa (Volume 8, 2008) Regional integration has been considered an important and successful tool of economic growth and development. Given AUDA-NEPAD’s new development focus, what hopes do you have for regional integration on the continent? This is very important in order to track implementation of agreements reached with these partners. Such broader public engagement and active popular participation apply equally to the political processes and inter-governmental negotiations and agreements that will create the legal, organisational, operational and financial means for all the combined or coordinated cross-border dimensions of regional development. This study was triggered by an observation that many regional integration institutions (RIIs) in Africa have fallen short of effectively delivering on their mandates. In Southern Africa, the regional integration grouping is the thirteen-nation Southern African Development Community (SADC). — Ibrahim Mayaki, chief executive officer of the the New Partnership for Africa’s Development (NEPAD), which is currently transforming into the African Union Development Agency (AUDA)—the implementing arm of the AU. If the consensus is strong—and that takes time to build—we can have strong agreements and start thinking about an implementation roadmap. If it was a road, it was one linking a mine to a port. "Regional economic integration refers to agreements between countries in a geographic region to reduce, and eventually remove, tariff and non-tariff barriers to the free flow of goods, services, and factors of production between each other" (Hill, 2004). Journal of Common Market Studies, 32: 45- 69 Mcdonald A.S.K., (2005). These programmes reflect member states’ priorities because it is their money, so, for example, if we have a programme in renewable energy in East Africa, it must be a priority in that region. What do you mean by that? And the various sectoral agreements, even if not immediately providing exactly equal gains to all participants at all points, have to reflect a high degree of finely-tuned cross-sectoral trade-offs and overall, longer-term mutual benefits. Critical factors of success in regional integration in Africa has no access electricity. 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