President Edgar Lungu says he gets surprised that some people seeking political office resort to desperate means of pursuing the presidency and seek to win people’s sympathy by advocating a freeze on foreign direct investment.
He said this yesterday when he launched a US$ 70 million Handyman’s Paradise Quicklime and Limestone Quarry plant in Masaiti district.
President Lungu said if the investment ernvironment was as poor as some politician alleged at a conference in London, there was no way investors would be putting more money in Zambia’s economy.
“…which is why we get surprised when some people seeking political office resort to desperate means of pursu ing the presidency even on the back of national failure, they seek to win peoples sympathy by advocating a freeze on foreign direct investment into the country,” he said.
President Lungu said although times were hard, particularly on the Copperbelt, people believed in the Patriotic Front’s ability to rise to the challenge.
“You heard on the news how Anglo-American Corporation is laying off 85,000 workers and yet someone told the people of Chingola that when he becomes President, he will bring back Anglo-American Corporation to take over Konkola Copper Mine.
“If his only plan to save jobs is Anglo, then Zambians have had an opportunity to see how hollow the opposition promises can be,” he said.
And the Head of State has assured Zambians that the Patriotic Front government was committed to maintaining a liberalized economy where economic players were at liberty to do business within the confines of the law.
President Lungu said government was resolute and ready to support Zambian businesses using their ingenuity not only to accrue benefits for themselves but also for the Zambian people.
He assured investors that government was duty bound to create an enabling business environment devoid of unnecessary incumberances.
“This will create job opportunities for our people on the Copperbelt given the recent job loss of employment in the mining sector,” President Lungu.
The Head of State has extended an invitation to entrepreneurs in Zambia, across Africa and the globe to take advantage of the vast investment opportunities existing inn Zambia.
The President said it was market forces or competitive tendencies within the economy that trigger lower prices for the benefit of citizens.
“The case in point is the entry of Dangote group into cement manufacturing in Zambia. This has lowered and stabilised cement prices for the benefit of our people,” he said.
The Handyman’s Paradise Lime plant projects was initially local funded before two development banks from Germany and Netherlands, DEG and FMO partly funded the project to a tune of US$ 30 million.