Zambia: Foreign Investments Fall Into Place

WHO is so deaf to hear the bells of investment ringing in Zambia?

Well, with a greatly improved investment climate in Zambia, more and more domestic and foreign investors are flooding the country to take advantage of the available manifold yet favourable investment climate.

This is simply why Ambassador to German Anthony Mukwita is calling on politicians to speak well about Zambia to avoid sparking civil strife which could destabilise the nation and turn away potential investors, especially when one speaks on both sides of the mouth, just like my elder boss-man would tell this author each time I go astray!

You may as well have to sit down before you finish reading this.

As Mr Mukwita put it, rather bluntly, that Zambians, especially politicians, should appreciate the peace and stability existing in the nation because this could not be said of conflict-hit countries like neighbouring Congo DR where civil strife had driven about 13, 000 people to seek refuge in Zambia.

Some of the local political players are bent on creating a negative image about the country in the eyes of the investing community -- making the investors perceive the offerings of the country as no full verve and no economic return promise.

In the process, some have, at least, done so -- discrediting the country -- to their own loss, even when: "Zambia has good laws and strong institutions firmly in place and things are going well".

In his speech in the House of Lords (1733-1806), Samuel Horsley, a British churchman, who was also well versed in physics and mathematics, opined that the people have nothing to do with laws but to obey them.

Mr Mukwita goes on: "But we can easily throw all this into flames if we continue saying Zambia is a bad country. It is unfortunate that some people have made it their business to bash their own country. This is not good and it does not benefit anyone."

In the words of Mr Mukwita, when Zambians say good things about the country this would help the international community have more confidence in the nation, thereby helping attract more investments, a situation which would accelerate economic development.

Unfortunately, one of the striking misgivings some opponents of Government have is that they are always doing everything to paint the positives prospects of the country in black.

Zambia's problems cannot be resolved by Zambia in its isolated form hence the need for the country to find ways to accommodate both domestic and foreign investors interested in various economic sectors because of the prevailing positive investment climate offering an array of business benefits.

Mr Mukwita contends that though Zambia was not perfect like any other country that was bound to make mistakes man, the country prides of an impeccable peace record abroad.

This has invariably attracted respect from the international community as witnessed by high profile dignitaries' visits to Zambia and the huge amount of foreign investment that flocked into the country.

Gradually, some local and international leaders are now accepting the unpalatable truth that the survival of the country lies in the collective to add value to the development programme, which was in vain if some on the other side of the debate pour scorn on positive achievements taking place in the country.

All their joys to Zambia's dented image are folly because even the international community have eyes and ears to see and hear both sides of the happenings in the country.

Zambia is country with a multiple interest and heritages that should be allowed to interest tourists and that should be grand ambition for all Zambians irrespective of political background.

The international trips undertaken by President Edgar Lungu have culminated in businesses thronging the country to invest in mining, manufacturing, transportation, logistics, agriculture and commerce, among other economical sectors.

Investors coming from the diaspora have been taking advantage of the opportunities offered in the tourism sector, while many others are going into agro-processing forcing Government to even work hard to provide an enabling environment beefed up with political stability and matchless leadership.

Mr Mukwita said the mission in German was working to connect Zambian tourism industry players with their European counterparts, stating that entrepreneurs should tap into the opportunities to expand their businesses while Government was finalising modalities to benefit from climate change fund established by the European Union (EU).

Investment will also need Government itself and the private sector actively participate through accelerated investments in an array of sectors.

If you take a back glance at history, Zambia has managed to advance in more than one way though there was more need than ever to back the programme with involvement of local communities to actively participate in the economy.

In this author's fare understanding, inadequate pool of skilled personnel has the potential to dim any positive economic outlook, as the country make strides to attract local and foreign investment in the national economic vector.

It is, for this reason, that even in the wake of Information and Communication Technology (ICT) storming the industry, as a backbone of economic development, there was need to build up human capacity and provide skilled people to participate in the overall investment plan designed to trigger sustained national growth.

Appropriately put, Mr Mukwita quips that the Zambian mission in Germany was working to strengthen economic cooperation in areas like energy, trades skills and tourism among others so that Zambia could build its skills and energy bases.

And good enough too, he assures that the mission was also keen to learn best practices from German, considering that this was the biggest economy in Europe and Zambia could benefit from systems that helped grow the skills base so that skilled manpower could create jobs for the citizenry.

So, it would be unfair for this country to continue witnessing the adjective - dotting motor-mouth armchair critics of Zambian affairs to find platform for their political diatribes!

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