Tanzania, Zambia agree to upgrade Tazara to SGR level

Tanzania and Zambia yesterday resolved to revamp the railway line that connects the two countries as part of their measures to improve bilateral ties. 

– the bi-national railway linking the Southern Africa Regional transport network to Eastern Africa’s seaport of Dar es Salaam – will now be upgraded to a standard gauge railway (SGR) through partnership with the private sector and development partners, leaders of the two countries said. 

President Samia Suluhu Hassan who was speaking during state visit of her Zambian counterpart Hakainde Hichilema, said the old line does not deliver what was expected, calling for upgrade to open up new business opportunities along the routes that connect the two countries. 

“In today’s world, railway is SGR. So through Public-Private Partnership (PPP), we have agreed to come up with a project to improve the Tazara railway into that level,” she said during press briefing at State House. 

Tanzania is also constructing 1,219 kilometres of SGR from Dar es Salaam to Mwanza. 

The two heads of state also discussed issues around the modernisation of the 1,710km crude oil pipeline (Tazama) that links the two countries as well as how to eradicate some tax and non-tax barriers to unlock trade. 

Orginal Article Link: https://www.thecitizen.co.tz/tanzania/news/national/tanzania-zambia-agree-to-upgrade-tazara-to-sgr-level-3901174


IFC to invest 35 mln USD in Zambia's largest agri-business firm

The International Finance Corporation (IFC), a financing arm of the World Bank, will invest 35 million U.S. dollars for boosting food production and processing capacities in Zambeef Products Plc, Zambia's largest agribusiness firm. 

The investment will also enable the firm to source more key input such as wheat, dairy and animal feed ingredients from local suppliers, according to an emailed statement released dated July 19, 2022. 

The statement added that the investment was expected to improve the firm's value chain, which will result in the creation of about 1,400 new jobs, expand tax revenue and support small-scale farmers and small and medium-sized businesses. 

"Throughout its history Zambeef has grown with the Zambian people, providing jobs, livelihoods and world-class shopping for our customers by adding value to local products," Faith Mukutu, the firm's chief executive officer said in the statement. 

She noted that the latest support from IFC was part of the firm's 100 million dollars investment strategy to expand its production. 

Carlos Katsuya, IFC's Senior Country Manager for Zambia said the investment will help the firm continue to develop and diversify as well as contribute to climate mitigation by supporting efforts to improve energy and fuel efficiency. 

According to him, the IFC will provide advisory services to help Zambeef set up a comprehensive carbon assessment planning system that will create longer-term climate-smart initiatives to combat climate change. 

The move, he said, will help reduce more than 14,000 tons of greenhouse gas every year. 

According to the statement, Zambeef is the largest integrated coal chain food products and agribusiness company in Zambia and one of the largest in the southern African region. 

It is listed on the local bourse and the AMI market of the London Stock Exchange. 

Orginal Article Link: https://www.thestar.com.my/news/world/2022/07/21/ifc-to-invest-35-mln-usd-in-zambia039s-largest-agri-business-firm


Trade Ties - Zambia and DRC Sign Cooperation Agreement to Manufacture Electric Batteries

The Cooperation Agreement is expected to provide a framework for bilateral cooperation on the initiative to develop the battery value chain as well as strengthen collaboration between Zambia and DRC.

Once actualised, the combined strategy will create jobs for Congolese and Zambians and boost economies of the two countries.

From the Zambian, the agreement was signed by Minister of Commerce, Trade and Industry Chipoka Mulenga, Minister of Finance and National Planning Situmbeko Musokotwane, and Mines and Mineral Development counterpart Paul Kabuswe.

DRC Minister of Industry Julien Paluku Kahongya, Minister of Mines Antoinette N'Samba Kalambayi, and Deputy Minister of Finance O’neige Mimpa signed the cooperation agreement of their country.

President Hakainde Hichilema and his DRC counterpart Felix Tshisekedi witnessed the signing ceremony at Mulungushi International Conference Centre in Lusaka yesterday.

Speaking after the signing ceremony, President Hakainde Hichilema said the signing of cooperation agreements between Zambia and the DRC to start manufacturing electric car batteries is key milestone towards poverty alleviation in Zambia and DRC.

President Hichilema added that the agreement has removed shame from Africa which has been known as an exporter of cheap raw materials.

“Today’s agreements prove that my attendance of the DRC Business Forum held in November 2021 was a right decision as it gave birth to today’s historical event. However, signing is one thing and there is need to actualize the agreement. Africa has for long been viewed as a source of raw materials, but the narrative is now being changed” the President emphasised.

On his part, DRC President Felix Tshisekedi said Africa has to be the master of its own destiny.

With the two countries being home to at least 80 percent of minerals required for production of electric car batteries, President Tshisekedi notes that African countries should put their resources together to unlock their economic potential.

He said the agreement will strengthen the value chain for production of batteries for electric cars which will be key to economies of Zambia and the DRC. Mr. Tshisekedi said Africa’s economic power will be advanced with such initiatives which will create jobs for many youths.

Speaking earlier, Commerce, Trade and Industry Minister, Mr Chipoka Mulenga the signing ceremony signified a key milestone for both countries as the initiative provides a great to harness mineral resource wealth and foster the development of mineral-based industrialisation and value chains.

“The era of electric vehicles is in sight, and batteries are poised to become a leading power source mobility”, the minister emphasised.

Mr Mulenga said with the leadership of the two heads of State, the ceremony demonstrated commitment to working together even beyond the development of the battery electrical vehicle value chain.

DRC Industry Minister Julien Paluku Kahongya said that there was need for Africa to add value to its natural resources in minerals like Cobalt, Lithium, Nickel and Manganese for it to ‘come out of economic turmoil’.

Mr Mulenga and Mr Kahongya in Zambia and DRC joint communique resolved that the two countries agreed to set up DRC-Zambia Battery Council to oversee the implementation of the cooperating agreement for the electric car battery value chain for the benefit of the two countries.

The Executive Council will be composed by President Hakainde Hichilema and his DRC counterpart Felix Tshisekedi and will comprise various key stakeholders.

For his part, Director for ECA Sub-Regional Office for Central Africa (ECA SRO-CA), Mr. Jean Luc Mastaki who spoke on behalf of ECA Executive Secretary, Vera Songwe, observed that DRC and Zambia had a golden opportunity to move from their historic status as exporters of cheap raw materials to manufacturer and supplier of battery precursors and the related knowledge-based services.

“Adding value to the battery minerals, through an inclusive and sustainable industrialisation, will definitely allow the two countries to pave the way to a robust, resilient and inclusive growth pattern which creates jobs for millions of our population and mostly the young people whose capacity will be strengthened by the African center of excellence on electrical batteries skills launched last week in Lubumbashi, as a partnership between Congolese and Zambian schools of mines and polytechnics” he said.

Mr. Mastaki added that the ECA was proud to be part of the development and signing of the cooperation agreement between the two countries. “This project is in line with the ambitions of the Africa Mining Vision, adopted by Heads of States at the February 2009 African Union summit. The vision proudly underlines how Africa would like to tackle the paradox of great mineral wealth existing side by side with pervasive poverty” Mr. Mastaki emphasised.

And African Export-Import Bank (Afreximbank) representative, Mr. Andrew Masuwa said the financial institution will fund preparations for the project which will culminate from the agreements and also offer advisory services. “We fully welcome and support the Operationalisation of this agreement” Mr. Masuwa said.

Zambia Association of Manufacturers president Ashu Sagar said the private sector will play its role in seeing to it that the programme succeeds.

“We have been advocating for the mineral beneficiation and this value addition will benefit both countries” Mr. Sagar added.

Bank of Zambia Governor, Denny Kalyalya said Zambia has depended on imports for a long time and that the agreement will increase foreign exchange inflow in the long run.

Dr. Kalyalya said the Central bank stands ready to ensure that financial institutions help provide resources to make the project successful.

University of Zambia Vice-Chancellor, Professor Luke Mumba said the higher learning institutions will train researchers for the project and participate in surveys to identify locations of the required minerals of the project.

The ceremony was attended by the two Presidents, ministers from DRC, Zambia and relevant public institutions representatives and key stakeholders from both the public and private sectors among others.

Orginal Article Link: https://www.un.org/africarenewal/magazine/may-2022/trade-ties-zambia-and-drc-sign-cooperation-agreement-manufacture-electric


Zambia and Namibian Govt to sign MOU for gas, oil pipeline construction

The Zambian and Namibian governments are next month expected to sign a Memorandum of Understanding for the construction of a Gas and Oil pipeline from Windhoek into Lusaka.

Energy Minister Peter Kapala disclosed this when he paid a courtesy call on Siavonga District Commissioner Geoffrey Jakopo at his office.

Mr.Kapala said the oil pipeline will help reduce the cost of petroleum products in the country.

He disclosed that the project, which is expected to take three to four years to be complete, will have its main gas and oil power station in Lusaka.

Mr. Kapala has also called for the prudent management of water resources following the poor rainfall recorded this year.

Mr.Kapala said the rainfall pattern did not perform as expected and this could result in the Kariba Dam recording water levels three meters lower than last year.

He, however, said the government is keen in ensuring that the resource is well managed so that it does not affect the production of electricity.

“We will ensure that we engage Zimbabwe on how well we can manage the resource equitably because if we do not do so this could cost hydro power production.” he said.

Meanwhile, Siavonga Member of Parliament Darius Mulunda has called on the Rural Electrification Authority (REA) through the office of the Energy Minister to help connect the villages to electricity.

Mr.Mulunda said it is sad to note that while Siavonga District houses the biggest power station in the country, many rural households are not electrified.

“When the Lake Kariba Dam was being built, one of the things promised to those who were displaced from the lake area was electricity in their homes, but up to now that commitment has not been actualized,” he said

The Siavonga lawmaker also called on the minister to engage ZESCO on the lighting of the central business district.

He said the district needs street lighting and this can only be achieved if ZESCO could come on board and provide lighting at no cost.

Orginal Article Link: https://www.lusakatimes.com/2022/05/05/360399/


Zambia starts mass export of avocados to Europe

Zambia has started the mass export of avocados to Europe with the first consignment of over 37 tons, a senior government official said Friday.

The commencement of export came after the southern African country met the phytosanitary requirements to export the fruit into Europe, said Permanent Secretary in the Ministry of Agriculture Green Mbozi.

The move marks the start of huge market opportunities for Zambia's avocado growers, Mbozi was quoted as saying by state broadcaster Zambia National Broadcasting Corporation.

The agricultural ministry is in the process of finalizing discussions with South African authorities to start exporting avocados to that country, said Kenneth Msiska, director of the Plant Quarantine and Phytosanitary Service.

Orginal Article Link: https://www.africaleader.com/news/272485965/zambia-starts-mass-export-of-avocados-to-europe


Zambia, Angola strengthens bilateral ties

Zambia and Angola have signed an addendum to operationalise the Bilateral Trade Agreement that was signed in 2016.

The Agreement will see an enhancement of trade and economic relations between the two countries and ensure some products are traded duty free.

Speaking during a bilateral ministerial meeting held at the Ministry of Industry and Commerce in Luanda today, Minister of Commerce, Trade and Industry, Chipoka Mulenga said the agreement is a game changer.

“Economic and trade relations should be anchored on coexistence among private sector players as vehicles through which poverty eradication and economic growth can be attained,” Mr Mulenga stated.

Mr. Mulenga said there is a need to utilize the natural resources and geographical proximity as vehicles through deeper bilateral economic and trade relations.

He called for redefining policy and legal framework for bilateral trade and economic relations.

Mr Mulenga called for economic transformation which will translate into better lives for the people of the two countries.

And Angolan Minister of Industry and Commerce, Victor Fernandez stated that trade and bilateral cooperation are essential for the sustainable growth of countries.

He said his government recognizes the role that the private sector plays in national and economic development.

Mr. Fernandez added that his government stands ready to improve the trade deficit that exists between Zambia and Angola.

Orginal Article Link: https://www.lusakatimes.com/2022/04/15/zambia-angola-strengthen-bilateral-ties/


Zambia will start exporting an additional 80 MW of electricity to Namibia

Zambia will start exporting an additional 80 MW of electricity to Namibia following an agreement signed by the utility companies of the two countries on Tuesday in Lusaka

Zambia's Zesco Limited and Namibia's Nampower signed a power supply agreement for the export of an additional 80 MW in addition to 100 MW being exported after the first agreement was signed in 2020.

Victor Mapani, the Managing Director of Zesco Limited, said the signing of the agreement demonstrated the continued cooperation and trust between the two utilities.

According to him, being a member of the Southern African Power Pool has created opportunities for Zesco to play a major role in trade in the regional power blocks.

Kahenge Haulofu, the Managing Director of Nampower said the agreement demonstrated the relationship that exists between the two companies over the years.

He said such collaboration will make a meaningful contribution to the economies of the two countries.

Orginal Article Link: https://www.theafricanews.net/news/272474702/zambia-to-export-additional-power-to-namibia


52 ZAMBIAN BUSINESSES IN DRC FOR TRADE:

The first cohort of over 52 representatives of Zambian companies has arrived in the Democratic Republic of Congo (DRC) ready to talk business with their Congolese business counterparts.

The delegation is led by Zambia Development Agency (ZDA ) Acting Director General Albert Halwampa, ZDA Director Enterprise Development Gabriel Musentekwa, ZDA Acting Director Export Development Obby Banda, Embassy of Finland Trade and Economic Adviser Jenna Kirkkari, Accelerated Growth for Micro, Small and Medium sized Enterprises in Zambia ( AGS Programme) Business Partnership Expert Anna Erkkila.

DA Export Development Specialist Chisenga Lufungulo and other ZDA officers made sure the samples/products to be showcased by the Zambian companies at the exhibition, crossed the border safely. The trade mission is slated for October 20 to 22, 2021.

The companies are in DR Congo, courtesy of ZDA, Government of Finland through the Accelerated Growth for Micro Small and Medium sized Enterprises in Zambia Programme, ABSA Bank Zambia PLC and Federation des Entreprises du Congo, to secure market access for their products. The Zambian companies will have business to business meetings with the Congolese and also showcase their products at the exhibition.

Permanent Secretary in the Ministry of Commerce, Trade and Industry Mushuma Mulenga, Finnish Ambassador to Zambia, Zimbabwe, Malawi and Democratic Republic of Congo Pirjo Suomela Chowdhury, AGS Programme Team Leader Gareth Evans, representatives from ABSA Bank PLC have also joined the delegation.

The aim of the trade mission is to secure market access for Zambian products.

The DR Congo Trade Mission is part of the implementation of the N8+1 Export Strategy to increase non traditional exports (NTEs) in the region, particularly in the low hanging fruit markets of DR Congo, Angola and South Africa.

Orginal Article Link: https://zambiareports.com/2021/10/20/52-zambian-businesses-drc-trade/