Chikwanda challenges private sector on development


MINISTER of Finance Alexander Chikwanda has challenged the private sector to take a leading role in accelerating national development.
Mr Chikwanda said the private sector should help stimulate growth through export promotion and facilitate the placement of local firms under the discipline of export markets and assist in widening local firms’ contracts on the global market.
The minister said this in Lusaka yesterday at the 48th Zambia Federation of Employers (ZFE) annual general meeting (AGM).
“There are a number of projects contained in the Sixth National Development Plan which can be implemented through the private sector initiative and this approach can help create budgetary leeway for Government which is invariably overstretched.
“The Patriotic Front government recognises the private sector as an engine for growth and a more reliable partner for accelerating development and registering meaningful development impact in an efficient and effective manner,” Mr Chikwanda said.
He said Government will remain committed to providing a supportive policy and regulatory framework for the private sector to do business in the country.
Mr Chikwanda also urged ZFE not only to pre-occupying itself with industrial relation matters but to also spearhead ways of developing and attracting reputable private sector players who can inject into the country’s economy.
ZFE president Alfred Masupha commended Government for revoking Statutory Instruments (SIs) No.33 of 2012 and 55 of 2013.
Mr Masupha said the two statutory instruments brought serious operational challenges to the private sector and contributed to the deterioration of the value of the Kwacha against major convertible currencies.
“On behalf of the business community, I wish to commend Government for listening to concerns raised by the private sector regarding the negative impact of the two revoked statutory instruments,” Mr Masupha said
Zambia Congress of Trade Unions (ZCTU) president Leonard Hikaumba urged Government to come up with measures to reduce the inflation rate , which currently standards at 7.7 percent.
Mr Hikaumba said ZCTU is concerned about the rising inflation rate which is distorting planning and forecasting parameters for business.

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