ZAMBIA IS SERIOUS WITH PRUDENT ECONOMIC MANAGEMENT

FINANCE MINISTER FELIX MUTATI has assured the international community that Zambia is serious about prudent economic management and enhancement of domestic resource mobilisation.

Mr. MUTATI reiterated the assurance at several consultative meetings with different bilateral and multilateral development partners during the recently held International Conference on Global Transit Guidelines held in Brussels, Belgium.

At a side event with the Senior Vice President of the Japanese International Cooperation Agency [JICA], Mr. KENICHI TOMIYOSHI, the Minister assured JICA that as part of the process of ensuring prudent resource management, Zambia was willing to work with Japan to improve tax administration.

“We seek Japans cooperation in establishing a single-window at the Chirundu one-stop-border in order to minimize revenue leakages and enhance revenue collection to levels beyond 20% of our GDP [Gross Domestic Product],” appealed Mr. MUTATI.

“We are also keen on the single-window initiative because it not only reduces transit processing time in the trade-value-chain but also increases border efficiency,” said Mr. Mutati.

Once successfully implemented, the single window facility would entail that the number of government agencies which cross-border traders and other border users interact with reduces to the barest or a single point.

JICA was instrumental in the establishment of the Africa’s first one-stop facility located at the border between Zambia and Zimbabwe.

AND Mr. MUTATI appealed to JICA to assist in financing the remaining portion of the power interconnector between Southern and East Africa “in order to increase the pool of available power in the south-east development corridor and all the way to North Africa.”

Speaking at the same bilateral event, Mr. TOMIYOSHI pledged the continued support of JICA to Zambia’s economic development agenda through promotion of productivity improvement programmes.

Mr. TOMIYOSHI said “African regional development blocks should balance their efforts between power generation and power transmission projects in order to minimize energy wastage in countries or regions where it is in abundance.”

MEANWHILE, World Customs Organisation Secretary General Mr. KUNIO MIKURIYA has pledged to make Zambia a regional showcase in the implementation of New Global Transit Guidelines.

“We will explore the option of supporting the establishment of single window facility at Chirundu and make Zambia a showcase,” he said.

“A key preparatory requirement for the single-window is for your country to develop a communication strategy so that all stakeholders are properly guided on the implication of the New Transit Guidelines,” said Mr. Mikuriya.

Mr. Mikuriya was speaking during a bilateral meeting between the World Customs Organisation, for which he is the Secretary General, and the Zambian delegation led by Minister Mutati.

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