Common Market for Eastern and Southern Africa

Address: COMESA Centre, Ben Bella Road, P. O. Box 30051 LUnited States of Americaka - ZAMBIA


Stakeholder group: NGOs and associations

The Common Market for Eastern and Southern Africa (COMESA) was formed in 1994 with the aim to attain sustainable growth and development for its 19 member states and to promote cooperation among them. The organisation's vision is to 'be a fully integrated, internationally competitive regional economic community with high standards of living for all its people ready to merge into an African Economic Community'.

COMESA's activities are clustered into several areas of work, and information and communications technologies is one of them. Under this area, the organisation undertakes activities aimed to promote the use of ICTs and to support the development of the information society. COMESA's main projects in this area cover the following topics:

  • e-Learning (an e-learning platform has been implemented in order to deliver online training in various areas of expertise);
  • e-Government (A Regional e-government framework was adopted in 2008, and a Regional e-government programme is under implementation, with the aim to encourage the use of e-government services at member states level);
  • e-Legislation (a Model Law on electronic transactions was adopted in 2010 and a a Cybersecurity Draft Model Bill was presented in 2011);
  • Free and Open Source Software (FOSS); and
  • telecommunication infrastructure (work in this area include a series of policy documents, regulatory guidelines on issues such as inteconnection and universal services, and projects such as the establishment of a regional telecom network).