Institutional Set up

The COMESA decision making structure is as follows:

The Authority of Heads of State and Government: This is the supreme organ of the Common Market and is composed of the Heads of State and Government of all the 21 Member States.

The Council of Ministers: This is composed of Ministers from the Coordinating Ministries of all the Member States. It is responsible for overseeing the functioning and development of COMESA and ensuring the implementation of agreed programmes and policies.

The Technical Committees: These are comprised of sector specific technical officials from the Member States. These committees are responsible for the preparation of comprehensive implementation programmes and timetables, which serve to prioritize the programmes with respect to each sector. In addition, they monitor and review the implementation of the programmes on co-operation and may request the Secretary-General to undertake specific investigations. Articles 15 and 16 of the Treaty stipulate that the Technical Committees of the Common Market shall be the following:

  • The Committee on Administrative and Budgetary Matters;
  • The Committee on Agriculture;
  • The Committee on Comprehensive Information Systems;
  • The Committee on Energy;
  • The Committee on Finance and Monetary Affairs;
  • The Committee on Industry;
  • The Committee on Labour, Human Resources and Social and Cultural Affairs;
  • The Committee on Legal Affairs;
  • The Committee on Natural Resources and Environment;
  • The Committee on Tourism and Wildlife;
  • The Committee on Statistical Matters;
  • The Committee on Trade and Customs; and
  • The Committee on Transport and

The Committee of Governors of Central Banks: comprises the Governors of Central Banks of all the Member States and they are in charge of the regional finance and monetary affairs.

The Intergovernmental Committee: This Committee comprises principal and permanent secretaries from Member States and is responsible for developing the programmes and action plans in all sectors of co-operation, except in the finance and monetary sectors. It monitors the functioning and development of the Common Market and oversees the implementation of the programmes in accordance with the provisions of the Treaty.

The Secretariat: Consists of members of staff that are representative of the 21 Member States, headed by the Secretary-General, who is appointed by the Authority. The Secretariat of the Common Market is in Lusaka, Zambia.