"Africa CARICOM" States Urged to Stay United
African and Caribbean countries have been tipped to stay United if the two are to achieve economic and social growth and also to deal with global calamities such as the Covid-19 pandemic and climate change.
On Tuesday, heads of government of Africa and the Caribbean Community met virtually where they among other things explored options on how to foster socio-economic growth.
The first-ever historical meeting was also aimed at promoting closer collaboration between African countries and the Caribbean and Pacific region.
President Lazarus Chakwera, chairperson of the Southern African Development Community was optimistic that the summit will beef up efforts by the SADC region to leverage opportunities and build relationships which are key to achieving the SADC Vision 2050.
Antigua and Barbuda Prime Minister Gastone Brown who is also chairperson of CARICOM stressed the need to draft solidarity actions which can suppress the Covid-19 pandemic.
Brown further called for the eradication of travel restrictions between African and Caribbean countries.
Concurring with Brown, South African President Cyril Ramaphosa who is also former immediate chairperson of the African Union said there is a need to have expertise and technology that can put the Covid-19 pandemic at bay.
"Just as we have worked together to access vaccine doses for our peoples, we need to share experiences, expertise, and technology to better respond to COVID-19 and future pandemics," he said.
"We must mobilize the global community behind the call for a temporary waiver of the TRIPS agreement at the WTO, and continue to lobby for partnerships on licensing and technology transfer with those countries that have the capacity to produce their own vaccines," Ramaphosa added.
Ramaphosa further said the summit will not only strengthen trade but it is revolving around the African Union Blueprint of 2063 which among other things looks at the inclusive economy and climate change.
The summit also centered on how economic trade integration, investment commitment between Africa and the Caribbean, and solidarity actions to address global challenges including COVID 19 pandemic and climate change.