Transforming southern Africa: Harnessing regional value chains and industrial policy for development

Contributions from leading economists and experts

This technical report brings together a series of contributions from leading economists and experts on the challenges and the opportunities faced by Southern African economies in their attempt to strengthen trade and productive integration.

The project has been carried out by UNCTAD in the framework of its activities aimed at fostering regional integration and at sustaining the SADC industrialization strategy, among other things through the strengthening of industrial policy capacity and coordination.



  • Reena das Nair is a Senior Researcher at the Centre for Competition, Regulation and Economic Development (CCRED). She is also an economist at Acacia Economics, a boutique consulting firm on competition and regulatory economics matters. She has experience in undertaking investigations and economic analysis in mergers, abuse of dominance and cartel cases. She has also undertaken research in economic regulation, particularly in the energy sector. Reena is currently a PhD candidate (Economics) with the University of Johannesburg.
  • Judith Fessehaie is currently a Programme Manager at the ITC. Her work is in the area of industrial development and regional industrialisation for international bodies, and national and local institutions. Judith holds a PhD in Economics from the University of Cape Town, where she was also associated with the Policy Research on International Services and Manufacturing (PRISM) centre.
  • Tamara Paremoer is an economist with more than 15 years’ experience in the public and private sector. She is the acting Divisional Manager of Mergers and Acquisitions. Tamara worked as a senior economist at the Centre for Competition, Regulation and Economic Development where she provided training and research support on competition economics to competition authorities in Ethiopia, Kenya, Zambia, Zimbabwe and Tanzania. Her research focused on assessing how regional value chains can support SADC industrialization, competition, concentration and inclusion in the South African economy and local economic development. Tamara holds a MCom (Economics) from Wits University.
  • Saul Levin is the Executive Director of Trade & Industrial Policy Strategies (TIPS). in April 2013 and was appointed Executive Director in December 2014. He was previously a chief director in the Economic Development Department (EDD) with oversight of the Development Finance Institutions reporting to EDD, including the Industrial Development Corporation and the Small Enterprise Finance Agency. He also worked as the chief of staff for Lindiwe Hendricks, heading her office while she was Minister of Water Affairs and Forestry and when she was Minister of Minerals and Energy. He has a Masters Degree in Industrial Sociology from the University of Witwatersrand, with his thesis on small business development.
  • Neva Makgetla has undertaken extensive research into South African economic issues, published widely, and contributed to a number of national economic policy processes and debates from 1994. Until 2015, she was Deputy Director General for economic policy in the Economic Development Department. Before that, she was Lead Economist for the Development Planning and Implementation Division at the Development Bank of Southern Africa. She has worked at a senior level in the Presidency and other government departments, and for seven years was head of the COSATU Policy Unit. She has a PhD in economics and before 1994 worked for over 10 years as an economics lecturer.
  • Thando Vilakazi is Executive Director of the Centre for Competition, Regulation and Economic Development (CCRED) at the University of Johannesburg. He currently also serves as a part-time member of the Competition Tribunal of South Africa. Thando previously worked as an economist at the Competition Commission of South Africa, and has led research and provided teaching and advisory services across various economic sectors for competition authorities, regulators, government departments, international universities and NGOs, and private enterprises in South Africa and various African countries. His research interests include barriers to entry and economic participation, regional integration, competition policy and inclusive growth, and industrial development. He holds a PhD (Economics) from the University of Johannesburg, and has published widely, including in Development Southern Africa and Review of African Political Economy, and HSRC Press and Wits University Press book publications.
Transforming southern Africa: Harnessing regional value chains and industrial policy for development - Contributions from leading economists and experts  (UNCTAD/GDS/ECIDC/2021/1)
19 Oct 2021