Science, technology can solve COMESA challenges
By Edith Mwale, Lusaka, Zambia
Zambia’s vice president, Guy Scott, says harnessing science and technology can provide solutions to challenges facing countries in the Common Market for Eastern and Southern Africa (COMESA).
Scott said the COMESA region is beset by a number of challenges but that science and technology can provide solutions to the challenges facing the region.
Scott said science and technology provide various platforms such as bio-technology which in turn provides solutions to challenges like nutrition, education, health, energy and environment.
COMESA already provides co-operation and promotion of science and technology among its member states but Scott said there is need for member states to make serious and concrete decisions which they should ensure are implemented.
Zambia is hosting the first-ever meeting of ministers responsible for science and technology in the COMESA region.
“Science and technology hold the promise to ultimately achieve better lives for our citizens and realising sustainable growth and development,” Scott said.
Scott cited a robust and friendly policy framework as one of the areas that deserve urgent attention by the COMESA region.
“Emphasis should be placed on fostering research and development through co-operation and collaboration within and outside our region,” Scott said.
The vice-president also called for financing of the innovation process, including adding value to intellectual properties.
And COMESA secretary general Sindiso Ngwenya thanked the Zambian government for providing an enabling environment in which the COMESA secretariat operates. Ngwenya said: “Africa cannot develop without science and technology innovation.”