You are currently viewing Investors should strike partnerships with local people, institutions

Investors should strike partnerships with local people, institutions

FOREIGN investors are important partners in Zambia’s socio-economic development.
They bring the much needed foreign currency along with their skills.
Investors also create jobs for our people, thereby helping to eradicate poverty.
Over and above, they have to co-exist with the communities in which they operate.
It is in this spirit that President Lungu urged foreign investors not to solely concentrate on reaping profits from their investments but to build partnerships with their local counterparts in the development of their business interests.
Speaking during the ground-breaking ceremony for the construction of the US$150 million Dola Hill mini-city in Ndola on Thursday, President Lungu said investors should strive to create partnerships with the local people.
Investors, especially the foreigners, should adhere to the President’s advice by forging strategic partnerships with locals – people and institutions.
For instance, Mei Mei Investments, a Chinese owned block-making company, which will construct a mini-city on a piece of land next to Levy Mwanawasa Stadium to comprise houses, warehouses, a five star hotel, shopping mall, an amusement park and a filling station, would do well to live with the local community.
We are aware that Mei Mei’s project, which President Lungu launched, is expected to create 800 jobs for the local people.
Mei Mei’s investment is testimony of the company’s commitment to partnering with Government to create jobs for our people.
However, there is no harm in Mei Mei partnering with trades institutes training bricklayers, plumbers, electricians and carpenters by offering students apprecenticeships.
Such a partnership can offer students distinctive work experience.
In fact, it is investors such as Mei Mei who may help build the capacity of trades’ institutes by offering them the 20 percent share in sub-contracting projects.
Trades schools, which rely on donor and Government funding, could come together and offer consultancy so that they benefit from the 20 percent works meant for sub-contracting local contractors.
Mei Mei could also make themselves visible in Ndola by intervening in Kantolomba township, one of the poor areas of the Copperbelt provincial capital, where most houses are in shambles while the community is also in need of water.
There is also Ndola Youth Academy, the Old People’s Home, the blind at Kang’onga and orphanages, which Mei Mei may consider helping out.
President Lungu’s moral in his counsel to Mei Mei is that regardless of the sector in which investors put their money, they must always consider having an ally on their side outside their business line.