Tuesday, November 12, 2019

Finland to support SADC meteorological services

The Finnish Ministry for Foreign Affairs has set aside EUR 10 million for a technical assistance that will support countries in the Southern African Development Community (SADC) region to improve their national meteorological services. This results from a decision in 2009.

Upcoming tenders will be announced for several international consultant positions.

The project will cooperate with SADC meteorology organisations and the national meteorology services of its 14 member countries. In this framework, the Finnish Meteorological Institute and the Meteorological Association of Southern Africa have been implementing a one-year project targeted at preparing a comprehensive project plan for this future Finnish support.

The most important task for the work will be to help the region respond to challenges posed by climate change.

The meteorological services should, on one hand, serve long-term planning - infrastructure, water resources management, agriculture - and, on the other hand, more immediate forecasting and early warning needs. This will be achieved by providing institutional capacity building, services tailor-made to the needs of various customers, a climate change information service, a disaster mitigation and early warning service, as well as an upgrading of the regional observation network.

For the Finnish Foreign Ministry, it is essential to ensure sustainability of actions as well as to create strong ownership. Donor-driven approaches need to be avoided, even if this would create delays, the Ministry states.