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Mineral value addition to spur employment

By Derrick Silimina

Government has reiterated its call for the need to add value to minerals in order to stop exporting jobs.

Speaking on the sidelines of the U.S- Africa Business Summit currently underway in Gaborone, Botswana, Commerce, Trade and Industry Minister Chipoka Mulenga urged African countries to collaborate with each other as opposed to competing.

“For a change, we strongly believe that we need to locally add value to our minerals which will help us stop the capital flight, exporting jobs and industries,” Mulenga said during the High level Dialogue dubbed; Enhancing Africa’s Value in Mineral Value Chains.

The Minister noted that collaborations in European and Asian countries were visible and urged African countries to take a leaf from them.

He said Zambia was getting into partnerships with countries like the Democratic Republic of Congo, Namibia and Zimbabwe in exploring various sectors.

Mulenga pointed out the partnership between the Government of Botswana and De Beers saying it is a path that most African countries should take.

He said Zambia was encouraging partnerships and joint ventures adding that policies should be investor friendly and private sector driven so that everybody is on board.

The Minister is accompanied by Ministry of Commerce Trade and Industry Permanent Secretary Mr John Mulongoti, Zambia Development Agency Director General Mr. Albert Halwampa and senior Government officials.

Earlier during the official opening of the U.S-Africa Business Summit, President of the Republic of Botswana Dr. Mokgweetsi Masisi hoped that the Summit would come up with resolutions that would lead to deepening of U.S- Africa trade relations.

Delegates who are attending the Summit include President of Mozambique, Felipe Nyusi, President of the Republic of Zimbabwe Emmerson Mnangagwa and President of the Republic of Niger Mohamed Bazoum.

Others are Prime Minister of the Kingdom of Lesotho Ntsokoane Samuel Matekane, Prime Minister of the Kingdom of Eswatini Sipho Dlamini and the Vice-President of Namibia Dr. Nangolo Mbumba.

This is according to a statement issued by the Press Secretary at Zambia’s High Commission to Botswana – Julia Malunga.

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