Geingob calls for equal partnerships in development

13 Jul 2015 16:30pm
WINDHOEK, 13 JUL (NAMPA) – President Hage Geingob has called for new partnership agreements between developed and developing countries, where all parties are considered equal.
Geingob said this on Monday in a statement prepared for delivery at the Third International Conference on Financing for Development underway in Addis Ababa, Ethiopia.
He called for a partnership based on equality, transparency and mutual trust.
“Let us relegate to the dustbin of history, those partnerships where people sitting in boardrooms in the developed world dictate terms that are forced upon us such as what transpired during the Economic Partnership Agreement (EPA) negotiations (with the European Union),” he said.
Namibia agreed to sign the EPA in July 2014, and negotiations on the EPA successfully ended last year; the parties are waiting to sign the documents in 2015.
The EPA is a comprehensive agreement with the whole Southern African Developing Community (SADC) EPA Group, and gives member states the opportunity to have duty and quota-free access to the European Union.
Geingob said development financing and the mechanisms that govern it should also change and become relevant to the realities of the time.
He noted that inequality is one of the greatest challenges developing nations are facing at present, and it has the potential to undermine the efforts to promote sustainable development, not only on the domestic front but also in the world in general.
“It is possible that if we pull together as humanity, under the umbrella of the UN, we will be able to arrest the increase of poverty in developing countries and open the doors towards a future of shared prosperity and global prosperity, where no country or citizen thereof shall feel left out,” he said.
Geingob said despite Namibia's significant achievement in improving the economy of the country, the income gap between the majority of the people and the few with access to economic resources is increasing.
He said it is for this reason that Namibia has declared all-out war on poverty, and in order to fight this poverty war, the country need to accelerate the rate of economic growth trade and investment.
However, there can be no growth without financing, said the Namibian leader.
Geingob said there is a need to grow the economy at a rate higher than five per cent by significantly investing in various sectors such as energy, road, rail and telecommunications.
“Without these supporting infrastructures our firms cannot be competitive,” he said.
The president stressed that the country need significant financing in order to develop the critical infrastructure as a step towards taking Namibia to the next level of development.
He noted that Namibia has significant natural resources, however, people do not eat natural resources, adding that people want food and access to basic services, quality health and quality education.
The head of state said the country need to unlock the wealth in Namibia for the benefit of all Namibians.