President Edgar Lungu commissions construction works for the $397 million Copperbelt International Airport

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President Edgar Lungu during the Ground breaking ceremony of the New Copperbelt international Airport in Ndola
President Edgar Lungu during the Ground breaking ceremony of the New Copperbelt international Airport in Ndola

President Edgar Lungu has today launched the construction of the US$397 million Copperbelt International Airport in Ndola.

ZANIS reports that the robust construction project will run for a period of three years and will be undertaken by a Chinese contractor AVIC international.

The Head of State says government has prioritized the expansion of transport infrastructure as it is critically essential for sustained growth and socio economic transformation.

A programme to construct and upgrade the transport infrastructure across the country is well in motion to make Zambia a transport hub of the region, he said.

“For us to achieve diversified and resilient economy as espoused in the seventh National Development Plan that was launched on Wednesday, we have to build a well function transport system, the project is a fulfilment of the patriotic front’s commitment to infrastructure development as one of the key priorities and strategy for accelerating our country’s socio economic development, ” he indicated.

President Lungu further mentioned that it was imperative that this project was taking place on the Copperbelt which has always been an economic engine of the country.

He said the relevance of the Copperbelt province to Zambia’ economic growth was in light with the diversification of agriculture and tourism.

President Lungu further directed the ministry on infrastructure development to ensure that sub contracts and supplies to project are undertaken by local contractors.

“In the same vein contractors should employ Copperbelt residents especially youths and further urged contractors to employ Copperbelt based residents especially youths ,“ he said.

And housing and Infrastructure Minister Ronald Chitotela revealed that the construction project will run for a period of three years and will create 3000 jobs during construction and a total of 5000 jobs once completed.

Mr. Chitotela urged contractors to observe and adhere to Zambian labour laws and adhere to quality workmanship.

The Copperbelt International Airport will comprise three aerodromes, a 3.5 Kilometer runway, a hotel, cargo terminal, business complex among other facilities.

Speaking at the same occasion Copperbelt Minister Bowman Lusambo said the construction of the new airport will help in the transformation of the diversification of the province from copper dependence to mining.

And Chinese Ambassador to Zambia Yang Youing said Zambia is poised to become potential Air transport hub in the region once the construction of the airport was completed.

Mr. Youing implored the aviation industry not to be content with the construction of airports but also concentrate on improving the capacity.

He urged the contractor AVIC International to complete the project within the stipulated period and adhere to quality works, and fulfil their social cooperate responsibility.

And AVIC International executive vice president Liu Jun assured the President and Zambians of timely complexion and delivery of Quality works.

The ceremony was attended by cabinet minister including Felix Mutati, the PF secretary general Mumbi Phiri, Copperbelt based Members of parliament, government and party officials.

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55 COMMENTS

  1. Is this part of the 7.2 billion loan? Yes lets modernize our facilities. But if I were to prioritize I would work on our universities and colleges first then the upgrades.

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    • You get loans left right and centre..the interest rate does not matter to you tins…surely cant you put $300m aside yourselves instead of borrowing!!

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    • HH will enjoy this airport and use it to insult ECL once he comes out. He’s such a Rat!

      Anyway what will happen to the current Kamalata airport in Ndola?

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    • Thats Kamalata airport was left by the RAF which the Royal British Air force during second world war. Thats how far Zambia is backwards

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    • THAT’S PROGRESS
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      Kindly also ensure that that investment is carefully guarded. Too much for the once Economic Tax Free Zone City label . Chiluba ruined the economic prowess of ND. Mwanawasa brought in the LPM stadium and you are bringing the state of the art Airport. Kindly supervise the works you excellence. Why shouldn’t Luanshya, Kitwe, Kapiri, Mpongwe and Mufulira benefit.
      ECL is State Counsel.

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    • Well done to Sata who initiated the project.

      Launching is one thing, implementing the project is what is very cardinal.

      But thanks ECL for making an effort. I am sure you will be surprised for me to say so. It’s simply that I love the Copperbelt. Went to Perseverance School in my early years

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    • YOU CHAPS ARE SADISTS. FOR ONCE, DISCUSS THE TOPIC AND SUGGEST THE WAY TO MAXIMISE POTENTIAL FROM THE CB, KK AND NKUMBULA INTERNATIONAL AIRPORTS. YOUR SADISTIC STATES LEAVES ME IN SHOCK. ANYWAY, IT TALKS MORE ABOUT YOUR INCARCERATED LEADER. HE DOESN’T TEACH YOU LOVE BUT HATE AND BITTERNESS. WE ALL BLAME THE GOVERNMENTS WHERE NEED BE BUT END IN OFFERING SOLUTIONS. IT’S LIKE BLAMING YOUR WIFE IN EVERYTHING WRONG. SHE CAN’T BE MAKING ALL THE MISTAKES WHOLE THE TIME AND YOU BEING MR PERFECT. MUKAFWA NEFIKONKO, GUYS.

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    • Simply look at the related archive stories below the article regarding the selfsame above project the project cost has reduced from $522m to $400m now in todays article $397m…these are millions of dollars here. What changed? To add insult to injury the settlers on this land have been paid peanuts.

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    • Building castles in the sky! wrong priority! what’s the volume of traffic? is this another white elephant?

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    • @1.10 (Peter), Can you read the posting at 1.2 (Nubian Princess)? Isn’t that diverting from the material story because she opened a Pandora’s box by attacking an innocent person who is not even mentioned in the story? What do you expect other people who sympathize with HH to say? Advise her not blaming everyone!

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    • @1.10 (Peter), Can you read the posting at 1.2 (Nubian Princess)? Isn’t that diverting from the material story because she opened a Pandora’s box by attacking an innocent person who is not even mentioned in the story? What do you expect other people who sympathize with HH to say? Advise her, not you blaming everyone for diverting from the topic at hand!

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  2. “President has also thanked the Chinese government for providing the 3-hundred and 97 million US dollar loan which is funding the airport project.”
    How can this lazy Bum direct the minister tto ensure local sub contractors are used when his govt is not funding it.
    There is that name again AVIC…Saviour Chishimba must be on something here.

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    • Thats news for DULL Zambians to feed. What what they dont know is that the money is from the Chinese government and not AVIC. One of the conditions the Chinese government gives these loans to Chinese companies is for them to use Chinese products so that Chinese exports are increased. Some DULL Zambian minister thinks they will use local suppliers. Ignorance is expensive.

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    • Docile Zambians need to wake up and ask more about funding; like is this loan through Chinese Exim Bank? If not why are we using a Chinese contractor..why Avic? Is this the Best practise.
      These loans keep piling up and we are sleeping…its us who will paying back with interest not this absolutely lazy corrupt Edgar who does not have a clue how money works.

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    • In short for every dollar the Chinese spend on this project they will eventually get back 3 dollars.

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    • @The Engineer
      Countries that give out these types of loans are very smart not only do they overprice their products they also use special products/materials that can be fitted by their own specialist sub-contractors. The only thing Zambians will benefit is providing unskilled casual workers.
      Lazy can issue orders in public but in reality its just show for those who are ignorant.

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    • @ jay Jay the way it works is that clever Chinese form a company for your own information AVIC can never construct or has never constructed anything in China, so a few Chinese form a company, come to Africa, bribe a minister or a president that we will build you a stadium or airport. They get a contract and go back to the Chinese government, They are provided with funding on condition that all material is exported from China to build the project a

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    • All future maintenance you will have to buy from China. Remember TAZARA? You can not cahnge the rail gauge nor the locomotives… made to Chinese standards

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    • @Jay jay I’m surprised such a comment just jumped out of you like that. Since GRZ is obtaining the loan, there can always be a clause stipulating rules of the loan such as using local labor or contractors. Once the loan has been serviced who maintains control of its expenditure? Jay jay you’re better than your comment today.

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  3. The problem with borrowing for infrastructure and social projects is that they don’t generate the foreign exchange to repay and service the Loan. Strictly speaking govt should borrow for projects which generates employment but also foreign exchange. If govt has borrowed $10 billion from China then they have got to generate exports that will earn foreign exchange to service and repay the Loans.

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    • Where’s the airlines and passenger traffic for this project gonna come from to pay off the loan? KKIA is barely able to survive on revenue from airlines/passengers numbers.

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  4. Mr president if such amounts end up in our banks and by zambians then its worlth borrowing. Not borrowing and hiring the same country to build withoit partnership with local contractors. This is just the same as borrowing twice as the money we go back to the same country and we will remain paying for the loans interest plus the money sitting back in there country. In short we just borrow money on paper and not phyisical. Please put a system that will make local companies benfit from such large fundings. If half of it ends up in Zambia for Zambians then the better. Think about us who will be paying through taxes which you will introduce later in future.

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    • Do you know what an Exim bank loan is? You are just too ignorant…you need to wake up now.
      You got Eurobonds, where you could have done all these projects cheaply with reputable internatoinal contractor but you got excited with money and ate everything…really sad i remember Sampa breaking down expenditure on his face book page today there is nothing to show for not even that $30m to UTH.

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  5. The construction of a new Airport in Ndola is commendable, especially taking into account that the current airport, which is surrounded by densely populated residential areas, does not offer modern aviation facilities. The new Ndola Airport will offer connectivity to Angola, Congo DR, Congo-Brazzaville and West Africa.

    Whereas massive developments are evolving in the Copperbelt, Luapula and Muchinga Provinces, the people of Eastern Province also pray for the day when the region can realise the establishment of a University which could have a specialized Faculties of Agriculture, Veterinary and Natural Resources to embrace conservation of water, soils, wildlife and heritage sites. Eastern MPs must emulate the team work of their hard working colleagues in Luapula.

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  6. Yes big dreams! The way to go! The only unfortunate thing is that the money for such projects end up in personal accounts or redirected to personal mansions! What a pity. We need selfless leaders.

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  7. Simon Mwansa Kapwepwe is the name of that runway in Ndola that serves as an international airport.Very embarrassing to call it an international airport actually.

    The new airport will be a great upgrade to the airport infrastructure. The only worrysome thing is the loan. I do not trust the Chinese neither do I trust the current government. A good part of the loan will go into the pockets of the PF bigwigs. The Chinese are an unscrupulous bunch. They are fond of passing envelops under the the table.

    Not sure about the specifics but this is one project where we atleast expect some return on investment both on the social and capital aspects. Unlike the other thoughtless projects, this is a more viable project.

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  8. This the news some satanists who belong to a satanists party and use black for their MPs suits and Red for their logo dont want to hear. You will perish of your hate and st.upidi.ty. Long live Chimbokaila – long live Mukobeka. Someone will come out a cabbage. Its just a matter of time!

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  9. This design is flawed – No taxiway!
    if we are expecting increase in traffic where planes will be landing and taking off one after the other one runway without a taxiway will result in landing and take-off delays.
    I understand at the moment we have 1 plane landing and taking off every 5 hours so it wont be an issue.

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  10. Where the airline traffic to justify this $397m investment? Our busiest airport KKIA is only served by just 13 airlines with very few flight per day.

    This is just a feel good project but the passenger numbers and ROI don’t really add up.

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    • So you would rather land at the Kamalata airport? Why can’t we use this opportunity to attract more traffic into Zambia by marketing our Tourist resorts with tourist assured of comfort through a modern airport? Dull

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  11. But this is a Chines indestructible work. They use cheap materials to add on Zambian contractors are not honest. They steal most of the building materials as a result the work is not standard. Believe me I used to work for a construction company in Lusaka. Guys would steal cement. We would have 100 bags of cement to mix in concrete and they would at least steal 10 bags and sale at cheap price and share the money. Now do you know the impact of 10 bags can do to a building? Mr Lungu, I support and appreciate your efforts for this development but please let these Chines do their jobs without involving any Zambian contractors. Let them finish the work and once they do they can handle over to Zambians.

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  12. Cost benefit analysis, is this very necessary for now?
    Do we need a $300 million dollar airport now?
    How is this facility supposed to payoff? Does the passenger volume justify this expense?

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  13. This looks like the 60s architecture where passengers have to deal with weather or get on a bus/shuttle to get to and from the aircraft. Someone is still thinking about waving goodbye to relatives or the president when they are walking to the plane. That was then. Now it is through the connecting schute directly to the lounge.

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    • Its the same uninspiring claptrap being done at KKIA…you wonder why they use Chines if its not corruption.

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  14. Some people are just critics because they have nothing to add of value. Zambia needs to upgrade and unfortunately not all relevant sectors can be attended to at once. It has to start somewhere. Therefore just appreciate the modern port of entry. I personally appreciate such developments than governments promising only by word of mouth but nothing tangible is seen.

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  15. @15 Teddy, but what else can UPNDonkeys do apart from hiho hiho?

    Anyway, good morning Chimbokaila residents. Please be assured that you will all be treated equally because you are all equal regardless of your previous status in society. I mean your status immediately before you took up residence in Chimbokaila. For example, none of you shall pay rent.
    Hiho hiho hiho, UPNDonkeys have abandoned the dead petition now they are chanting:

    HEAR THE TREASON!

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  16. Lol what a wasteful prestige project.

    To give you some perspective ,the combined traffic of all of Zambia’s Int’l airports is less than half of passenger traffic handled by Kenya’s JKIA alone.

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  17. The Airport of Country tells you the story of that particular Nation! It is a shame to land at the so called international Airport that doesn’t meet the international standards. It is a shame especially for our leaders traveling out of the country every other day to countries with modern airports. It is time overdue to to have at least two modern Airports. I can’t wait to see this project completed.

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  18. This is very good. It is about time we built world-class international airports like the way we have built the soccer stadia. In other countries like Japan, the current KK international airport can be likened to a railway station of a small town.

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  19. AGAIN UPND is left flabbergasted…New Airport against the backdrop of…HEAR THE PETITION…which has now turned to…HEAR THE TREASON CASE!….lol…SELA TUBOMBEKO!

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  20. What is the justification of building a New Airport on the CB? What new Passenger and Cargo traffic is there? Avic was given this Contract by Lungu without going to Tender and in return Avic is building luxury Mansions in New Kasama for Lungu and without Lungu paying a cent. This Is corruption at the highest level. The fish rots from the Head downwards. Lungu is clinging to power to accumulate and protect his personal wealth at the expense of ordinary Zambians. Anybody who threatens Lungu’s newly found Dictatorship will be crushed. That is why HH is languishing in Jail on fake Treason Charge for failing to recognize Dictator and Sadist Lungu as a Legitimate President. With Lungu at the Helm Zambia is doomed just like Zimbabwe.

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  21. @JJ akafwa kuli hatred! Wina ali mu Chimbokaila wina asebenza! Professor Chamu! Wina azafwa kuli hate attack!

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  22. Unplanned projects and no benefit and costs analysis as usual . Do we really need this airport at the moment? I think this is a project for the future, say 2050,the current airports are sufficient given very few Zambians travel by air internally. What we need now is a dual carriage way , running from Livingstone to Solowezi and from Kapiri to Nakonde. Then a railway line from Kitwe to Solowezi. This is what should have been done in the first place before embarking on building some of the many roads in the country leading to nowhere.

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