Themba MunalulaHead - Statistics Unit
areas of expertise
- Regional Integration Statistics
- Trade Policy Modelling
- Project Management
- MSc – Information Technology, University of Cape Town
- MSc – Quantitative Development Economics, University of Warwick
- BSc – Mathematics and Statistics, University of Zambia
- GTAP Modelling Certificate – Purdue University
- Data Mining Certificate – SAS Institute
Mr. Themba Munalula, a Zambian national, is the Head of Statistics at the Secretariat of the Common Market for Eastern and Southern Africa (COMESA). He has over 28 years of experience in the field of Statistics and Project Management. Prior to joining COMESA, he worked with the United Nations World Food Program as a Vulnerability Assessment Socio Economist. This was after working under the Zambia Ministry of Finance’s Central Statistical Office as Principal Statistician. He is a holder of Masters degrees in Informational Technology and Quantitative Development Economics from the Universities of Cape Town (South Africa) and Warwick (UK) respectively. He also holds a Bachelor of Science degree in Mathematics from University of Zambia.
In his portfolio:
- He leads the implementation of the second COMESA Statistics Strategy that seeks to develop a statistical response to the COMESA Medium Term Strategic Plan. The statistical response targets the development of regional statistical programs on; market integration, industrialization, economic infrastructure, investment and gender. More specifically;
- In the area of human capital development, he manages programs that have seen over 1500 experts trained in various fields of statistics related to regional integration.
- On statistical governance, he was instrumental in setting up the COMESA statistical governance frameworks with the formation of the COMESA Committee on Statistical Matters which now oversees statistical development in the region.
- With regards to methodological development and harmonization, he manages a team that has strengthened this aspect in the area of price indices, international trade and environment statistics among others.
- On the technological front, he is currently managing a team piloting the statistical data and metadata exchange (SDMX) implementation in COMESA Member states. Secondly, he also manages the process of continuous development of the COMESA data portal, COMSTAT, under the African Information Highway initiative. His team also manages software implementation on proprietary software for international merchandise trade statistics and are currently the implementing partner to the African Union’s Pan African Statistics Program.
- He manages and advises on COMESA Statistical partnerships with other agencies including;
- The COMESA -African Development Bank partnership on statistics, that has successfully implemented the International Comparison Program, the 2017 ICP surveys as well as the AfDB’s Statistical Capacity Building Program;
- The Eleventh European Development Fund (EDF11) statistical programs and
- The USAID Regional Development Objectives Grant Agreement (RDOAG) component on statistical support.
He represents COMESA as a member of the African Statistical Coordination Committee under the auspices of the AUC’s. Mr Munalula currently represents the Secretariat as a board member of Partnership in Statistics for Development in the 21st Century (PARIS21) which promotes better use and production of statistics worldwide. He is a past member of the International Statistical Institute’s operational committee on statistical capacity building.