GOVERNMENT must  speedily establish a world-class Convention Centre in
Livingstone to rejuvenate the economy of Zambia’s Tourist Capital,
Livingstone Chamber of Commerce and Industry (LCCI) president Namakau
Siyanga has said.

In 2014, then Tourism and Arts Deputy Minister Lawrence Evans
announced that the Government had identified an area behind Maramba
Cultural Village and Livingstone Show grounds as one of the potential
sites where a 5, 000 capacity world-class Convention Centre and other
infrastructure will be constructed in the tourist capital.

Other infrastructures to be established are a 300 roomed five star
resort hotel complex, a shopping arcade, an entertainment centre,
information centre and 40 offices to carter for administration of
resort complex and conference.

Speaking in an interview in Livingstone, Ms Sianga said the planned
conventional centre would be used to bring big groups from all over
the world to have their meetings.

She said the move would make Livingstone busier and ultimately
increase on revenue collection for the Government.

On January 31, 2014, the Ministry of Tourism and Arts Procurement
Committee invited Expressions of Interest from eligible consultants
interested in providing architectural, engineering, and quality
surveying services for the proposed construction of the modern
convention centre and other infrastructures on an area covering 16
hectares.

The construction of various infrastructures in Livingstone is in line
with the Government’s renewed desire to diversify the tourism product
base of Zambia.

Ms Siyanga also asked the Government to quickly complete the
construction of the international bus terminus and ultramodern market
in Livingstone to stir economic activities in the City.

“Looking at the two buildings, whose construction works started in
2013 in readiness for the UNWTO General Assembly, the incomplete
structures are almost being viewed as a white elephant.

“Our streets are congested because our people have no spaces from
where to operate from. There is need for the Government to consider
completing the two buildings the market and the bus terminus,” she
said.

Ms Siyanga also asked Finance Minister Felix Mutali to consider
declaring Livingstone as a tax free zone as a pilot project.

“If Livingstone will be taken as a tax free zone at least as a pilot
project for two to three years, this would mean huge revenue
collection for the country,”Ms Siyanga said.

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4 COMMENTS

  1. Declaring a place as a tax haven does not imply increased revenue collection. It increases the investment level during its implementation and only realizes increased revenue when the tax band is enforced. By then the usual divestiture takes root.
    Typically it’s the multinationals that benefit from tax holidays.

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