HONE SIAME, Lusaka
GOVERNMENT says it will partner with the Chinese government to transform Lusaka Province into an agro-processing hub in line with its robust economic
diversification programme through industrialisation.
Lusaka Province Minister Japhen Mwakalombe said the establishment of agro-processing plants in Lusaka will reduce wastage of agro-products and contribute to sustainable economic development.
Mr Mwakalombe was speaking at Ethiopia’s Bole International Airport when he was transiting from China where he was attending the China Zambia week alongside Vice-President Inonge Wina.
This is according to a statement issued by first secretary for press and tourism Inutu Mwanza at the Zambian mission in Ethiopia.
“Lusaka being an area with a lot of agro-products will now have means of preserving agricultural foods after the processing plants are set up,” he said.
Mr Mwakalombe also said plans are underway to divide Lusaka Province into industrial zones that will culminate in the setting up of industrial parks that will be specialised in manufacturing to grow the economy in the province.
He said Lusaka needed an economic boost as it was the second biggest contributor to the country’s gross domestic product (GDP) after Copperbelt Province.
Meanwhile, Mr Mwakalombe announced plans to turn Lusaka into a conferencing tourism site with modern structures that would attract people to Lusaka Province.
He said Government intends to partner with Chinese investors to upgrade old buildings in the central business district.
He said those who own buildings have been called upon to enter into partnerships with some Chinese investors who would develop skyscrapers in Lusaka.
And Zambia Tourism Agency chief executive officer Felix Chaila, who was part of the entourage, said tourism is the catalyst for investment and economic development if well harnessed.
He said Zambia’s tourism sector needs to be driven by the domestic market like China.
Mr Chaila said the Ministry of Tourism has plans of building hotels in tourist destinations in order to make accommodation affordable especially for local tourists.