Gaborone – Members of the Southern African Development Community (SADC) will increasingly establish one-stop border posts (OSBPs) to improve trade and movement of people across the region.
The Zambia-Zimbabwe crossing at Chirundu is already a one-stop border post, and the regional bloc wants to replicate the model at more points between various countries. At present, Botswana and Zambia are finalising a OSBP at their meeting point in Kazungula.
Botswana’s Minister of Immigration Anna Mokgethi told Parliament that Botswana and South Africa were establishing such facility between their countries, but their plans had been stalled by the onset of the COVID-19 pandemic.
“Our plans are to negotiate with other countries in the region to turn some of the borders into one-stop border posts operating for 24 hours,” she added.
She said among the posts earmarked for this by Botswana were Mamuno (Namibia), Ramokgwebana (Zimbabwe), and Tlokweng and Martins (South Africa).
“I wish to indicate that efforts to establish one-stop border posts to facilitate smooth migration and transportation of goods and services are ongoing. The construction of Kazungula One Stop Border Post is at an advanced stage and it is scheduled for completion mid this year,’ she said.
Last year Botswana and South Africa signed an MoU to convert the Tlokweng and Kopfontein inland ports into one-stop border posts.
Reports indicate South Africa intends to change all its six inland into one-stop border posts.