PRESIDENT Hakainde Hichilema has urged Zambian and Namibian business leaders not to view their governments as competitors but as partners in development.
He said governments and business leaders shared the same vision of serving their local populations by uplifting their standards of living.
He said when he was in the private sector, business owners pushed the Government to undertake certain things and in the end they got frustrated.
He said yesterday when he officiated at the 2022 Swakopmund International Trade Expo (SWAITEX), in Swakopmund, Erongo Region of Namibia yesterday that businesses should ensure
they were interwoven by forming joint ventures with the local population and governments, for them to receive the necessary support and solidarity.
President Hichilema graced the expo at the invitation of his Namibian counterpart Hage Geingob.
“But now we are one because our intent is the same,” he said.
He said the presence of both government and private business leaders at the expo underscored the two nations’ desire to streamline and reduce unnecessary bureaucracy on matters of trade and investment between the governments and the private sector of the two countries and the region.
The president also thanked the Namibian Government and its people for availing Zambia the Walvis Bay Dry Port, which had made it easier for the country to diversify its trade routes.
He said the dry port was of economic importance to Zambia and was grateful to the people of Namibia.
He said the trade expo was a platform for innovation presentation and as leaders they had sent a signal that public/private partnership was not an issue of short-changing issues.
President Hichilema said it was good that the expo had brought together labour, the Government and private sector and that there was need for enterprise partnerships and the private sector should have joint ventures with Governments.
“There is also need to look at education curriculum, because there is need for skills that not only meet the needs for scientists but also skills,” he said.
Mr Hichilema added that the issue of starting good things by some governments was because of changing leaders who changed things and that there was need for laws to institutionalise common interests.