26 June 2012

Zambia: Cotton Impasse Detrimental

THE current impasse between the local cotton farmers and buyers concerning the price of cotton is a blow to agricultural diversification in the country.

Occurring at a time when there are calls for the Government and other stakeholders to move away from the "overpromotion" of maize cultivation, the standoff will further dampen the morale among the few farmers involved in cotton farming.

There is, therefore, urgent need for farmers and buyers to quickly reach a compromise for a win-win scenario and help maintain stability in the sector.

Metal price changes worrying

INDICATIONS coming from the international metal market on the prices of copper are worrying given that Zambia is a major exporter of that commodity.

For Zambia, copper is a major product which contributes immensely to the country's export performance levels.

The price at which the metal is exported has a huge bearing on the local economy and the current sagging prices is a negative aspect.

Best bid for oil suppliers

THERE is need to be cautious when handling the current selection process for the next oil suppliers for Zambia to ensure the best bidders are picked.

The Government, through the relevant ministry, should tell the nation what happened to the two firms, Gunvor and Trafigura, which were initially picked as preferred bidders.

There is similarly need to reassure the nation and other stakeholders that transparency and accountability will continue prevailing in this important process.

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