COMMERCE minister Christopher Yaluma says Zambia’s going back to the polls next year should not make investors feel indifferent about investing in any of country’s economic sectors.
Officiating at the Zambia-France Virtual Investment Forum organised by the Zambian Embassy in France and the Movement of the Enterprises of France (MEDEF) International, Yaluma said Zambia had in the past held peaceful elections and at no time did the country experience any form of political instability since independence in 1964.
“Let me assure you that Zambia’s political situation remains favourable and democratic,” he said. “You may wish to note that we will be going back to the polls next year and this political process should not make you feel indifferent about investing in any of Zambia’s economic sectors. This is also because Zambia has in the past held peaceful elections and at no time did we as a country experience any form of political instability since we got independence in 1964.”
Yaluma said despite the challenges posed by the COVID-19 pandemic, Zambia was still open to investment and doing business with the world.
He said Zambia was an ideal investment destination.
“Therefore, despite the challenges being caused by the pandemic, Zambia still presents a silver lining and remains open for investment and doing business with the world,” he said. “Zambia is a country with numerous untapped investment and business opportunities across all sectors.”
Yaluma cited geographical location, private sector-driven economic policies and a stable political system as some of the notable reasons for investing in Zambia.
“Suffice to mention that Zambia is signatory to the African Continental Free Trade Area (ACFTA) which is coming into effect next year,” he said according to a statement issued by communications and public relations manager Laura Hamusute. “Further, Zambia is well positioned to be used as a viable launch-pad to penetrate the entire African market.”
Yaluma appealed to the French business community to invest in Zambia, assuring them that the government through the Zambia Development Agency (ZDA) and other relevant institutions would ensure the safety of their investments.
He said Zambia had since independence enjoyed warm and cordial bilateral relations with France.
“The creation of the French-Zambia Chamber of Commerce a couple of years ago, is also a testimony that bilateral commercial relations between the two countries are growing from strength to strength,” Yaluma said.
He commended Zambia’s Embassy in France and MEDEF International for creating a platform for promoting Zambia’s investment opportunities to the French business community.
And French Ambassador to Zambia Sylvain Berger encouraged would-be French investors to invest in sectors such as health, banking, agriculture, distribution, retail and many others.
Ambassador Berger appealed to the would-be French investors to also consider working with the private sector and partnering with Zambian companies.
Meanwhile, Zambia’s Ambassador to France Dr Christine Kaseba said she hoped to see more French footprints in Zambia.
Dr Kaseba pledged the Zambian Mission’s commitment to working with ZDA in the facilitation of travel of French Investors to Zambia.
Further, in his presentation, ZDA acting director general Mukula Makasa explained the tax incentives and the various investment opportunities available in the Zambian agriculture, energy, manufacturing and tourism sectors.