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Counting on presidential trips

JACK MWEWA, Lusaka

AMONG some commitments President Hakainde Hichilema has made is that he would make necessary travels abroad that will benefit Zambia.
His recent visit to United Arab Emirates (UAE) for the Dubai 2020 World Expo, simply confirms pronouncements he made that he would make productive trips. Originally scheduled for October 20, 2020 to April 10, 2021, Expo 2020 was postponed due to the COVID-19 pandemic but organisers maintained the name for marketing and branding purposes. Dubai being one of the world’s respected financial hubs is the right destination for an accomplished entrepreneur like Mr Hichilema who seeks to market his country. What better place would tell an economic transformation story than Dubai which remodelled from a fishing village to what it is today? Zambians can rest be assured that they have a selfless representation in Mr Hichilema, who has demonstrated prudence in every movement he makes. Apart from the two trips Mr Hichilema earlier made to the Western World which he accounted for during a live radio programme, other travels saw him visit neighbouring countries on similar missions. While it is too early to count benefits earned from those trips, President Hichilema has indicated that he has appointed himself chief salesman for the country, therefore, his travels are of business related. “As Zambia’s chief marketing officer, we will deliver this message to investors that Zambia must be their next business destination,” Mr Hichilema said. South Africa was one country the President visited to attend last year’s Intra-African Trade Fair where a call on African countries to tackle issues aimed at easing business was made. As per his pledge to market the country, Mr Hichilema told the press that once at the Trade Fair, he would use the occasion to attract investment for Zambia. “Our mission is to make a case of Zambia as an investment destination in our role as chief marketing officer. The investment we are looking for will be that which is willing to partner with Zambians on a joint venture basis,” he said. To Mr Hichilema, such was a good platform for business-to-business and government-to-government discussions which he regarded as CLICK TO READ MORE


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