BLANTYRE-(MaraviPost)-The National Education Coalitions in SADC region have urged the heads of states to invest in public education which is key the achievement of sustainable development.

The Coalitions disclosed this in an open letter to the SADC Heads of State through the President of Malawi Dr Lazarus McCarthy Chakwera.

In the letter, the education Coalitions petitioned SADC governments to raise the globally agreed education financing benchmarks of 15-20% of national budget and 46% GDP during and after the Covid-19 pandemic.

The coalition said education is not only one of the 17 Sustainable Development Goals but also climacteric for achieving key priorities for SADC governments across the region.

The Coalitions also beseeched the presidents to exercise the fundamental role of fair and progressive tax mobilisation through the removal of harmful corporate tax incentives and review of unfavorable Double Taxation Agreements.

The letter also revealed that malawi lost about US$ 87 million to harmful tax incentives and tax treaties in 2015/16 which is more than double the costings in the current National Strategy for Inclusive Education over five years.

However, in 2020 six progressive tax reforms could significantly increase revenue generation in Malawi, translating into a 2% increase in Malawi’s tax-to-GDP ratio (an estimated US$ 135.1 million).

Similarly in Mozambique, programme of reforms focusing on taxes on personal and corporate income and incentives, property and luxury goods, could result in a staggering 6% increase in the tax-to-GDP ratio in Mozambique which adds up to around US$ 701 million equivalent to the current percentage of GDP allocated to the entire education budget.

The Coalitions commended the president of Malawi for the assuming the role of incoming Chairperson of SADC, taking over from Filipe Jacinto Nyusi, President of the Republic of Mozambique.

They have pinned their hopes on Malawi’s president to use the opportunity to continue championing the principles of equity and social justice for sustainable development across the region.

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