TANZANIA has appealed to the Southern African Development Community (SADC) member states to conduct a joint investigation for finding a solutions to money laundering and financing terrorist groups in the region.
“With humbleness, I request member states to unite in doing investigation to see how we can stop and get rid of this problem through consultations and exchanging experiences,” Finance and Planning Ministry Permanent Secretary Mr Doto James remarked.
He argued that the community, among other challenges, still faces the challenge of money laundering and sponsorship of terrorist groups.
The problem has led to some of the member countries being included in the list of countries risking to be subjected to international sanctions for failure to fulfill conditions set by the Financial Action Task Force.
“This situation may cripple efforts for attracting investments and affect the community’s goals,” Mr James stated yesterday in Dar es Salaam, when officially opening the SADC meeting of senior officials of treasury and central banks.
The meeting comes ahead of tomorrow’s meeting of SADC Committee of ministers of finance and investment.
The meeting was conducted via video-conferencing, a mode that SADC endorsed as a measure for avoiding the spread of the Covid-19 pandemic within member states.
Mr James, who also chaired the senior officials meeting, said the community has continued implementing its intent to realise development goals as stipulated in its Strategic Development Plan, despite existing challenges.
This proves that the community is strong and has managed to cross over various setbacks both social and economic.
Despite economic achievements, some of the member states have continued to face various challenges in the economic sector.
They include slow economic growth, reduced government revenues and increased debts that threaten their capacity to implement the community’s development goals.
Mr James further noted that Covid-19 had economically impacted the countries; some of the effects being reduction in export, paralysing social services, failure to repay loans from financial institutions and reduced domestic revenues.
“In order to address these effects, there was a need for member countries to use institutional systems in finding alternative means in order to fast track steps for strengthening the economy within our community,” he said.
The senior officials’ meeting was scheduled to look into implementation of resolutions made during the previous meeting of the ministers for finance and investment, which was held in Windhoek, Namibia, in July last year.
The participants would also receive and discuss a report on updates over running the SADC Regional Development Fund and Project Preparation Development Facility.
The senior officials would also receive and discuss the report on establishment of a Regional Transmission Infrastructure Financing Facility (RTIFF).