The Southern Africa Trade Hub, in partnership with the Swaziland Investor Roadmap Unit (IRMU) conducted an investor roadmap audit covering government departments and the private sector. The Investor Roadmap is a tool to help improve a country’s investment climate with regulatory, legislative, and procedural reforms; the Trade Hub last conducted a similar audit in 2013.
The first two days of the program covered the audit process, followed by a half-day presentation of findings to the Parliamentary Portfolio Committee on commerce and a validation workshop attended by both government officials and private sector.
Key reform issues were discussed during the audit and workshop including company registration, immigration reform, trading across borders, land issues, mining procedures, and delays in issuing health inspection licenses.
The validation workshop was designed to review preliminary audit findings and to secure buy-in from both public and private sectors on the resolution of outstanding issues and the way forward. Results will feed into the Investor Climate Reform Communications Strategy to be developed by the Trade Hub. While the government of Swaziland has made progress in addressing Investor Roadmap issues, the successes have not been properly communicated to implementers, the private sector, and other intended beneficiaries. The communications strategy will address this problem at both national and international levels.
The Swaziland Investor Roadmap was developed in 2005 with support from the Trade Hub to help create an enabling environment to lure investment into the country. In order to expedite regulatory reforms, Swaziland established an IRMU, which was launched on August 1, 2014. The IRMU’s overall objective is to improve Swaziland’s ranking on global indices such as the World Bank Ease of Doing Business and the Global Competitiveness Index.
Photo: The Validation Workshop drew attendees from the government of Swaziland and the private sector