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Veep assures Indian investors

VICE-PRESIDENT Mutale Nalumango has assured Indian investors that their investments in Zambia are safe due to the conducive investment climate and political stability that the country enjoys.

Ms. Nalumango says she is aware that the Indian business sector has already staked US$5 billion for investment in Zambia and that such investments will be protected by law.

“Zambia believes in the rule of law and that the Zambia Development Agency mandated to promote investments has power to grant investment protection agreements.” Ms. Nalumango stated.

She was speaking at the 17th Confederation of Indian Industries (CII) EXIM Bank India Africa Growth Partnership Conclave in New Delhi.

The conference has attracted over 600 government and business representatives and 500 local firms.

Four African High level leaders are attending the meeting along with 35 government ministers, under the theme, Creating Shared futures.

Ms Nalumango said Zambia is open for business and has great need for more partnerships in various sectors of the economy.

She described trade relations with India as strong and in excess of US$1 billion.

She said India’s economic footprint in the Zambian economy is seen from the over US$3 billion investment by Indian firms in the country.

“Over US$3 billion of investment by Indian enterprises have been registered in Zambia in the recent past, with more than US$5 billion already in the pipeline” said Ms. Nalumango. – ZANIS

The Vice President said Zambia is in a deed of partnerships to boost the agriculture sector through enhanced value chain to food processing.

Ms. Nalumango told local and international delegates that Zambia’s vast untapped potential in several economic sectors, needs urgent exploration and harnessing to grow the economy.

She said Zambia needs investors to set up industries and factories to enhance value addition to what she produces so that the industrialisation agenda can create jobs for Zambians and improve their welfare.

“Zambia needs partnerships in strengthening agriculture and food processing value chains” said Ms. Nalumango.

She said developing the mining and minerals sectors as well as pharmaceutical, tourism, health, education and energy sectors among others remains cardinal to the new dawn administration’s socio-economic transformation agenda.

Ms. Nalumango urged Zambia, African countries and India to take advantage of the African Continental Free Trade Area to enhance scale-up trade and investment among each other.

She challenged African countries and India to take advantage of the uncertainty created by the conflict in Eastern Europe, to ensure global food security by growing more food.

“The current global food and fuel shortages resulting in sky rocketing prices, are signs of the urgency for us, collectively, to work together to address the dire situation in some parts of Africa” said Ms. Nalumango.

The Vice President appealed to African and Indian leaders and captains of industries at the conference to explore ways of uplifting youths and women out of poverty, by transforming the economic fortunes of Africa and India.

Vice President of Gambia Badara Joof, Vice President of Mauritius Marie Boissezon, Vice President of South Sudan Riek Machar, and Namibian Deputy Prime Minister Netumbo Nandi-Ndaitwah are among the high profile African leaders attending the conference.

Ms. Nalumango assured that high level engagement that Zambia is well positioned to be the trade and investment hub for Southern Africa, and Indian businesses, due to her strategic location and ease of doing business looking at the country’s comparative advantage over neighbours.

And opening the conference, India’s Minister of Commerce and Industry Piyush Goyal assured Africa of his country’s commitment to support the continent’s socio-economic transformation agenda.

Mr. Goyal said India’s 17-year development cooperation with Africa under the CII Exim Bank India Africa Growth Partnership has given Africa a platform to build socio economic bridges for the benefit of her people.

He noted that India will continue to work towards strengthening business ties with African countries based on the unique needs of individual countries.

Mr. Goyal said India is one of Afric’stop five trade and investment partner as reflected in the increase of India’s investment portfolio in Africa to over US$75 billion in the last few years

He said India is drafting a new 25-year development cooperation and partnership plan that will provide the framework for her future economic and development partnerships support to Africa. – ZANIS.

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