Zambia Diaspora Portal

GOVERNMENT will soon create policies to incentivise people in the diaspora to enable them to have a conducive environment through which to remit funds for investments and become part of the economic development process.
Minister of Finance and National Planning Situmbeko Musokotwane said this in response to concerns raised by Zambians living in Virginia, Washington DC and Maryland during an interactive meeting at the Zambian embassy on 22nd April, 2024.
Dr Musokotwane said Government understands the challenges faced by citizens living abroad regarding their investment plans.
When Khupiwe Chirambo asked about delayed payment of pension funds owed to her retiree parents, the minister assured her that he will personally follow up the case of her parents because the New Dawn administration has been dismantling arrears owed to retirees.
“So many positive developments are happening from the time we came into office,” Dr Musokotwane said.
“Firstly, we have formed the council on public-private-partnership (PPP), which is under my chairmanship, and through this platform we encourage locals or citizens to establish joint ventures (JV) with foreigners… even those who have invested in the big mines in our country, they didn’t have had enough money but they partnered with others with money.
“So please do it and the Government will ring-fence your investments. You are now exposed and you have the expertise, so share the potential and opportunities about Zambia and come and invest home.
“As Government, we are working on creating a conducive environment for you to land safely.”
Dr Musokotwane said through policy reforms, Government has also attracted investments in fertiliser production such that the country is now a net exporter of basal compound while a urea plant is on the pipeline.
“We also export floor tiles, including porcelain, and foodstuff through Trade Kings and others who are main suppliers to the Democratic Republic of Congo (DRC) and other neighbouring countries,” he said in response to questions.
“On value addition, we are making efforts and we urge you (those in diaspora) to come back home with the drive and energy you have learned in the USA and to put it in practice in Zambia and help drive economic development for our country.”
On concerns by some Zambian medical personnel who intend to invest in specialised hospitals but are hindered due to higher import duties, Dr Musokotwane said Government will consider something in the coming budget.
“It is something we may consider in the coming budget and treat them differently so that they set up medical industries, but for now this is treated as machineries for tax purposes,” he said.
“This is how India has become a hub of medical tourism, and we shall definitely consider this matter,”Bank of Zambia Governor Denny Kalyalya said Government is constantly learning so that it comes up with flexible regulations and policy frameworks to enable the diaspora to invest home.
“We are striving to create an enabling environment for you to invest,” he said. “What may seem little money here is huge sums in Zambia. $100 here may be not much but in Zambia it will make a difference.” …



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