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Mulungushi Textiles takeover right on

THE sealing of the takeover of the Zambia-China Mulungushi Textiles Joint Venture (ZCMT–JV) by Mohammed Enterprises Tanzania Limited (MeTL) could not have come at an optune time like now.
The signing of the agreement between the ZCMT–JV and MeTL is coming at a time when the Kabwe mine, one of the major industrial activity that had kept the town going, is closing down.
The closure of any industry brings about untold misery. Apart from the loss of jobs, the local economy is adversely affected, leading to a town being referred to as “economically dead”.
And this is what Kabwe had virtually become. Without any significant industries, the town has been economically lifeless, apart from the agricultural activities that have been taking place in the surrounding areas.
We acknowledge though that the areas around Kabwe have various agricultural activities which have sustained the populations.
However, agriculture, which for most of the time, depends on good rainfall, cannot be a very safe economic activity to bring about economic growth in the district.
This is particularly so if irrigation and other areas of agriculture are not developed fast enough.
There should be a balance in the economic activities so that economic sectors supplement each other and reduce overdependence on one sector.
It is therefore commendable with the signing of the certificates of handover and the take-over of assets by MeTL in Kabwe, the company will add a new lease of life to the town.
This is good not only for Kabwe residents but for the entire nation, which also stands to benefit from the products that the factory will churn out.
Kabwe residents stand to be the first line of beneficiaries through the projected 2,000 jobs to be created.
The lease between the ZMTL-JV and the MeTL is for 12 years and we urge all interest groups to give it the support it deserves.  Let the workers also use this time to thoroughly learn the skills needed to keep such a company afloat.  Such skills could in future be used to expand the sector in other parts of the country.
The new owners must be commended for agreeing with Government that the company is viable and it would add value to the country’s economy.
Their decision to invest in the company also underscores the fact that Zambia is an excellent country for doing business in.
Given the many years that the company has been dormant, it could take a while before the rewards of this investment begin to show.  With teamwork and focus between management and the rest of the workers, the investment could begin to bear fruit sooner rather than later.
This is what Kabwe, in particular, and Zambia, in general, is looking forward to.