MINISTER of Finance Alexander Chikwanda says the US$750 million Eurobond is being wisely and properly utilised in sectors Government has invested in.
Mr Chikwanda said Zesco is using Eurobond money to develop Itezhi Tezhi and Kafue Gorge power projects.
“The Eurobond money is only used for growth generation projects, it is not used for recurrent projects, and it is not used to pay salaries for some people, it is all for development projects,” he said.
Mr Chikwanda said the US$120 million Eurobond money for Zambia Railways Limited (ZRL) deposited in a Zanaco bank account has earned lots of interest.
He said that several banks are now competing with each other to attract the ZRL money.
“They are fighting each other. By the time they have projects to finance, they will have earned quite a lot of interest from the Eurobond money they deposited. So, all the money is being used properly,” he said.
Mr Chikwanda said Government has started paying interest for the US$750 million Eurobond adding that it has a responsibility to pay back money with interest.
“It is important that the money is used, there is nothing secret. Zambians are entitled to know what is going on with the money we borrowed because at the end of the day you are going to pay back the money.
“So, you need to know. No secrecy, no mafia type of activities, there is total accountability, we have to account for the money,” he said.
As to whether Government would soon go back to the market to get more money, Mr Chikwanda said that was the preserve of the Ministry of Finance to know.
Meanwhile, the minister said the construction of extension power projects at Kariba North Bank Power is good and inspiring adding that Zesco will deliver an extra 280 Mega Watts (MW) of power by the end 2013to end power blues the country has been experiencing.
He said Zambia has an advantageous position and has no competitors in power generation in the region because of abundance of surface water which accounts for 40 percent of water in the sub region.
He advised Zesco to go flat out and finish the power projects saying the company will have no excuse if it fails because government has always supported the utility company.
Zesco managing director Cyprian Chitundu said the company will make sure that Zambia is turned into a hub for electricity trade in the sub-region.
“The line we are building to Tanzania will open up to the corridor to East Africa. Also we are going to connect to Mozambique, we are already in discussion with the Mozambican government,” he said.