Transport Works Supply and Communications Minister Yamfwa Mukanga says government appreciates the contributions the European Union has done to the development of the road sector in Zambia.
Mr Mukanga said the contribution of the co-operating partner is one thing which Zambians greatly appreciates.
The Transport Works Supply and Communications Minister said this yesterday during the official launch of the capacity building to the road transport sector programme funded under the European Union development fund at Hotel Intercontinental in Lusaka.
Mr Mukanga said the transport sector in Zambia has faced a lot of challenges which need concerted efforts by government and co-operating partners.
He said the road sector in Zambia has experienced a 20 years focus on routine maintenance and rehabilitation of a core road network of 40, 113 km out of 67, 000 km of national road network.
He stated that the road sector demands a lot on money which needs huge contribution from government and other helpful co-operating partners like the European Union.
Mr Mukanga said government’s road programmes includes the Link Zambia 8000, pave Zambia 2000 and Lusaka 400 amongst others have increased the resource demands from the limited road sector resource development.
He said the objectives and aim of government is to increase market accessibility, reduced transit times, reduced transport costs and job creation and poverty alleviation for the Zambian people.
The Transport Works Supply and Communications Minister said government appreciates the number of projects and programmes which the European Union supports Zambia such as the Nacala Corridor development project and Luangwa Bridge to Mwami border.
Mr Mukannga thanked the European Union and urged them to continue with this good gesture which has been appreciated by the Zambian people including the establishment of the national Airline which will be established soon.
He said government is looking for the increased capital investment for Zambia Railways and Tanzania Zambia Railways to revamp their operations.
Mr Mukanka articulated that the role of the transport sector in Zambia is to facilitate social and economic development and growth and synergies with other economic sector.
And European Union Ambassador to Zambia Gilles Hervia said the European Union has so far contributed 36 Million Kwacha to the development of the road sector in Zambia.
Mr Hervia said the transport sector is most important in the development of any given nation, the reason why the European Union values the development of the sector.
He said the European Union so far has worked on the major road in Zambia such as the Monze- Zimba road, Kabwe –Kapiri-mposhi and Zimba- Livingstone roads respectively.
He added the European Union is geared to ensuring that necessary reforms and investment policy is achieved in the development of the road sector in Zambia.
Mr Hervia said the EU has contracted 15 companies to develop the road sector in Zambia which includes capable and reputable Zambian Contractors as well as the private sector contribution.