Wednesday, 27 April 2011

Opportunities in Zambia

It was a pleasure to be in Zambia a couple of weeks ago, it is a county I have visited may times over my career and one I have always enjoyed my stays in. I was in Livingston for the Annual meeting of the Zambia International Business Advisory Council with President Banda. It was great to hear about the progress Zambia has made over the last decade since the council was set up. Zambia, last year, had the highest growth rate in Africa and the 25 highest in the world, Zambia is now one of the largest copper producers in the world and last year increased its output at a rate higher then both Chilli and China. The Country’s GDP per Capita has now reached lower middle income levels. The ZIBAC board members were universally impressed worth the progress the country has made and at how well it is doing. One of the main recommendations to President Banda was that he should increase the money spent on making sure the world knows about Zambia’s successes and possibilities – as you only need tell a bad news story once for it to be heard, but good news needs to repeated again and again…………

Following the ZIBAC meeting we held the first Zambia Investment Forum, which we co-organised with the Zambia Development Agency. The Forum brought together 50 international business leaders and investors with local project holders and government leaders to forge new partnerships and help increase the involvement of the international private sector in Zambia’s economy. 3 MoUs we signed at the Event.

The President told me that his government is stepping up its efforts to tackle its skills and training shortages in the population and recognises this can only be done in partnership with the private sector – so this will be a thriving investment opportunity over the coming years as well as good opportunities in Agriculture, Tourism and Mining.

Zambia is a great investment destination and I would encourage investors to look closely at the opportunities available there.

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