North West Chamber supports Govt vision on diversification

Thu, 30 Mar 2017 11:08:59 +0000

 

By JACK MAPAPAYI

THE North Western Chamber of Commerce and Industry says it is determined to support Government’s vision of diversifying the economy from over-dependence on mining to agro processing.

Chamber vice president for industry and manufacturing Mukumbi Kafuta said the support was important to strengthen the economy and create sustainable employment and wealth in the country.

He told the Daily Nation in an interview that countries which had maximised agro-processing had more and better jobs than the ones in the mining sector.

Mr Kafuta said a thriving agriculture sector will promote complementary sub-sectors such as agro-processing.

He explained that agriculture could act as an engine to economic growth and poverty reduction as it employed at least 70 percent of Zambia’s rural population.

“According to 2016 United Nations Development Programme Zambia Human Development report, countries that had maximised the agro-processing sector had more and better jobs in terms of quality than those in the mining sector,” he said.

He however said that lack of machinery and poor road network to connect the rural areas to the market was what was limiting agriculture’s contribution to the economy.

He said there was need for investment and improvement to the road network especially in rural areas so that farmers could easily access the markets.

He said farmers in rural areas we increasingly finding it difficult to move their produce to the market because of the poor road network

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