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Wednesday, February 8, 2023

Kalaba happy with progress a Finnish firm has made in building a $ 200 million energy plant in Shangombo

EconomyKalaba happy with progress a Finnish firm has made in...
Foreign Affairs Minister Harry Kalaba
Foreign Affairs Minister Harry Kalaba

Foreign Affairs Minister Harry Kalaba is happy with progress a Finnish company Nacart has made in building a $200 million energy plant that shall create thousands of jobs and narrow the energy deficit in Zambia.

Mr Kalaba conversely says once the project is complete, Zambia will not only light the ‘darkest part’ of rural Zambia in Shangombo where the project is located but will also provide potential for exporting power to neighbouring countries such as Angola and Namibia in western and North western Zambia.

This is according to Zambia’s Charge d’ Affaires to Sweden Mr Anthony Mukwita who accompanied the Foreign Affairs Minister on an enhanced economic diplomacy engagement of western Europe.

“Mr Vesa Korhonen the Managing Director of Nacat gave hon. Kalaba and his delegation a great report during a high level lunch held in the honour of Minister Kalaba by the Minister for Foreign Trade and Development of Finland in Helsinki Mr Kai Mykkänen at the historic House of Estates. The discussions were economically progressive and enlightening,” said Mr Mukwita.

Mr Kalaba said Finland’s unwavering trade interest in Zambia was a ‘clear testimony’ of the trust the West has in Zambia as a ‘stable and safe country to invest’ in given the presence of pockets of instability in parts of the region.

“To me the investment that has been directed to Shangombo, one of the least developed parts of Zambia means our trading partners have full confidence in our stability as far as far as doing business is concerned. $200 million is a lot of money, you don’t invest $200million into a project in a country whose stability you doubt this is a plus for Zambia.”

Mr Kalaba is championing an enhanced trade corporation path, rather than aid corporation that dominated diplomatic relations in Zambia before President Edgar Lungu’s election and subsequent popular election in 2016. Optimisation of Zambia’s economic diplomatic relations is being done through the countries representation abroad in countries such as Sweden.

What the energy project is all about

  • Under the project, the Finnish based power firm will produce over 800,000 metric tonnes of sugar annually
  • Over 30,000 hectares of land will be cultivated
  • Over 3000 Zambians in Shangombo shall benefit from direct employment leading to poverty reduction while hundreds others will be indirectly employed
  • Zambia has a current power deficit of about 2400 megawatts which will be narrowed and reduce power rationing once the project is completed
  • Through exports of power to Angola and Namibia, Zambia will earn the much needed foreign currency through this massive FDI according to experts

Mr Korhonen, who expressed confidence of the project in Zambia told Mr Kalaba, “the first phase of the project must produce up to 30-40 megawatts” of solar and bio power.
Mr Kalaba head that once the project is completed up to 100 megawatts will be potentially produced by the sugar driven plant that is also immensely environmentally friendly, a song to the Minister’s ears whose maxim is: “global warming is not a hoax.”

On completion over a period of at least four years from 2017, the power plant will have a total production capacity of 100MW.

This is probably one of the most expensive coming out of Finland since Zambia and Finland started diplomatic relations just over 50 years ago and Mr Kalaba says its importance cannot be under played.

“We are stepping up efforts in all trade facets to ensure that the message of President Lungu regarding economic diplomacy bears fruit and this here is one such example,” Mr Kalaba said.

The Foreign Affairs Minister re-iterated the President Lungu administration to continue embracing the good governance record Zambia has that has attracted foreign investment to the southern African country.

“We will also continue telling the international community that doing business with Zambia means doing business with a SADC and COMESA family of more than 700 million people so come to Zambia and capture a wider regional market.”

Mr Mukwita said the Foreign Affairs Minister was scheduled to hold similar high level economic meetings with business in Sweden before concluding his busy agenda.
“His visit to Sweden is very significant at such a level because it will be the first time it will be happening in over years,” said Mr Mukwita adding that, “relations as you have seen have peaked between Zambia, Sweden and other Nordic countries.”

Zambia is represented in the Scandinavian countries such as Finland, Latvia, Norway, Denmark, Iceland and Estonia through a full mission in Stockholm Sweden, hence the reason hon Kalaba had a heavy business schedule here that included a call a rare call at the Swedish Foreign Affairs Ministry.

President Edgar Lungu since election and re-election in 2015 and 2016 has twice met Swedish Prime Minister Stefan Lofven while Finance Minister Felix Mutati in January met his Finance counter-part, the deputy prime minister, including the President of Bombardier that seek to partner in the greater revival of Zambia Railways.

Zambia Railways currently operates at a tragically low optimum level of moving less than 5000 metric tonnes of cargo annually but once revived, hopefully with the Bombardier partnership, thousands of jobs could be created and goods of up to 1 million metric tonnes could move on rail instead of roads according to studies.

Mr Mukwita said, “the increased traffic between top level Zambian officials and Swedish and even Finnish officials effectively means we have a great future in real economic diplomacy…the kind of diplomacy creates jobs and reduces poverty.”


  1. It is always foreigners doing things for us in Zambia. Are you telling me we some have local capable businesses or maybe pf has failed to empower local businesses due to corruption. The latter makes more sense

    • If I was Kalaba I would fire Mukwita.
      What has Kalaba to do with Shagobo constituency.
      Mukwita want to sell Kalaba , kissing boss ass

    • If you are Zambian, you shouldn’t be asking that question!! Why can’t you stop being a donkey and criticising PF all the time and start a business???

  2. In 2021 Mr Kalaba the forgetful of PF bandits will be asked to prove his assertions that this project will be completed by then.
    To date, visionless Lungu & PF have failed to provide the 500,000 jobs they lied about.
    PF bandits of lies have failed to reduce prices of mealie meal to less than K100 for a 25kg. PF found it @ K37 from MMD. Over & forever lies, PF bandits of visionless Lungu lied about the K5/litre fuel from Saudi Arabia. Amid perpetual load shedding, electricity tariffs there is unemployment, poverty, hunger & suffering in Zambia under this ruthless PF of economically blind Lungu.
    PF is all talk.
    The Skeleton Key

  3. The NED (new educated Zambian) strikes me as an extremely dull person. If a country gets new direct investment from anywhere, that should be celebrated by all citizens. New Direct Investnmect is a plus, you dull Unpd malcontents. It’s an addition to the wealth and development of a country. Britain, America, Germany, India, etc, etc, all celebrate it. Why shouldn’t Zambia? NED is a really dull nut. One wonders what school such a blogger went to

  4. Yes he’s happy but does he know the engineering,technical and structural benchmarks required? A lay man can be easilly impressed with substandard work just like Mushota can be easilly fooled with substandard car tires.

  5. Now let us look at the facts. Is Shangombo connected to the national power grid? How do you export electricity to Angola when you have a deficit in Zambia? What is a ‘sugar driven plant’? Obviously, this is hightech,( if it is true) then what sort of skill force is in Shangombo? Engineers, Technicians?? Conclusion: The project only exists in Mwikuta’s head. No normal person would invest $200 million in a remote inaccessible rural area to produce solar power. The sun is all over in Zambia, not only in Shangombo. Why are Zambians so gullible?

    • You don’t even know what is happening in your bantustans?? H.E. the late Michael Sata built a bridge that has made Shang’ombo accessible now. Residents of Shang’ombo are even able to go into Namibia every morning to shop and get jobs. For the sugar powered plant, not solar as you put it, just google and everything is available for you to read. TU SONTEPO???

    • @ Zambian Citizens here is the quote ‘ Mr Korhonen, who expressed confidence of the project in Zambia told Mr Kalaba, “the first phase of the project must produce up to 30-40 megawatts” of solar and bio power. My question is they will need sugar cane plantations, process the canes and produce sugar, then build the so called sugar powered plants to generate electricity, is Shangombo connected to the national grid? Where is the electricity going to be used?

    • Was the Maamba power plant connected when they set it up?? As long as the will to succeed is there, it will be connected. It is happening already at Zambia Sugar, except ZS uses the power internally. Then the power can be exported or connected to the national grid through ZESCO.

  6. HARRY KALABA IS POSITIONING HIMSELF FOR THE PF Presidency, though I DONT LIKE HIM TO challenge LUNGU he seems to be a capable man than HH to givern the country after ECL steps down at the party convention next year

  7. So why is Kalaba commenting on this? Why is the rat Anthony on this matter as well is there no Ambassdor in Sweden?

  8. Is it me or all the big investment announcements indicate that the project will be completed un 2021…Is the timing coincidental.

    • …So the SONTING (check the latest words added to the dictionary!) can be done properly and the DUNUNING can be louder that time…kwekwekwekwekwe….

  9. That is a very big project. Infact for the doubting Thomas, i know of the company which has won a tender to construct houses for staff who will be working for the sugar company in Shangombo. It is not a HOAX as some may think. Zambians should learn to start encouraging ourselves and not always shooting ourselves in the feet because the people to benefit when the economy improves is us and the people to suffer when the economy does not improve is again us. So let us be positive because it is only a positive mind which prospers.

  10. Thanks mwkale not a doubting thomas i just check. And you are correct we must be more positive as people to progress this nation.
    Note the number of blogs when it is about politics as opposed to economic advancement..
    Prefer us to be One zambia one nation one people… to promote unity. A unified entity works better than a disjointed one
    Again thank you

  11. If your are professional blogger and blind follower you have not time to free your mind so that you can think about developmental projects so you visit major 1 and seer 1 in the hope your party can win then you get a ‘job’

  12. Proverbs 17:28 – Even a fool, when he holdeth his peace, is counted wise: [and] he that shutteth his lips [is esteemed] a man of understanding.

  13. Lets give Sweden ALL of our Power Energy Projects….. then. Our Chinese friends like cutting corners, though you can’t fault the genius that was Tazara or whatever……..need to come home on hols in couple weeks obviously!

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