Figures show that Zambia is not one of the favorable destinations for investment as the Minister said

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Mines Minister Chris Yaluma speaking during the Mining Indaba 2017

By Economic.Governance

 

Ministers must be accountable for what they say

I hope the President holds each Minister accountable for the public statements that they make especially when they are close to lies. One of the problems facing Zambia today is that almost every Zambian tells lies. And I don’t mean one lie. Lies are found in almost everything that we say. From the lies that our leaders have taught us, almost every child lies. The culture of unbridled lying is growing so fast and consistently that soon no one from outside the country will take us seriously. Then there is the problem of inflating what we say so that those listening can easily support us. Leaders do not care when they are doing this to their people. Then there is the careless talk syndrome. Leaders and each one of us simply talk what we want because no one checks on us.

Zambia, one of the most favorable investment destinations?

Let me put this in context. In the Lusaka Times of 6 February, Minister of Mines and Mineral Development, Hon Christopher Yaluma said, “Zambia remained one of the most favorable Investment destination in Southern Africa.” Without figures, people listening are likely to believe or not believe. That is why leaders like Ministers should first do research, prepare statistics and consult experts before they make statements. It is good for them because they will be saying things based on informed decisions and therefore will be more specific and avoid generalizations. The Minister was speaking at a very important Africa Mining meeting in Cape Town, South Africa. To qualify his statement, the Minister said, “The country had attracted some of the worlds largest mine houses which was a good demonstration to its favorable investment climate.” That is clever talk as usual from every Zambian, in particular leaders. They will simply say whatever they want.

The problem in our country is that no one holds anyone accountable for what they say. I have tried in my articles to translate what leaders say in statements in public by using figures. And here, after reading the statement from the Minister. I did a quick research of figures. One way to test the Minister’s statement would be to go to figures showing, in the last ten years, compared to the last almost 30 years to see the trend of how much Zambia has been attracting inward foreign direct investment (FDI) in relation to other African countries. So, Table 1 below shows that in 1990, in Sub-Sahara Africa (SSA), Zambia ranked number three after Liberia and Nigeria. Then, the Minister’s statement would be supported by figures. Ten years after, in 2000, the table shows that Zambia’s ranking dropped to a shameful fifteenth. But more importantly, and in line with the period that the Minister is referring to, in particular in 2016, Zambia’s ranking dropped even further to number seventeen.

The figures don’t match the statements

Yes, as the Minister correctly states, “The country had attracted some of the world’s largest mine houses which was a good demonstration to its favorable investment climate. And, “Zambia had a favorable investment climate in Zambia and this was confirmed by existing mines and green field investments in copper production that had risen to 770,597 in 2016.” But, how do you explain your statements in light of the reality that our country has in fact been overtaken by so many small countries that are now attracting more FDI from the world than Zambia, according to statistics shown? What is the point of showing off about a favorable environment for FDI when figures show that it is other countries that are benefiting? If it were true that Zambia is favorable, the figures would logically show that the country is ranking among the top five but is number 17 in 2016 dropping from number 3 in 1990. Do leaders simply want to make themselves happy when the situation on the ground is untrue?

Table 1: Zambia’s inward Foreign Direct Investment in $ Millions in Sub-Sahara Africa

Ranking No  Country 1990  Country 2000  country 2016
1 Nigeria 1,003 Angola 2,174 Angola 14,364
2 Liberia 225 Nigeria 1,310 Nigeria 4,449
3 Zambia 203 South Africa 887 Ghana 3,485
4 Sudan (.2011) 392 Ethiopia 3,196
6 Tanzania 282 Mozambique 3,093
7 Mauritius 277 South Africa 2,270
8 Côte d’Ivoire 235 Congo 2,006
9 Namibia 186 Tanzania 1,365
10 Uganda 181 DRC 1,205
11 Congo 166 Sudan 1,064
12 Cameroon 159 Gabon 703
13 Equatorial Guinea 154 Chad 560
13 Mozambique 139 Uganda 541
14 Ethiopia 135 Madagascar 541
15     Zambia 122 Sierra Leone 516
16 Côte d’Ivoire 481
17         Zambia 469

Source: Unctastat

In Foreign Direct Investment Stock too, Zambia is not competitive

In case the argument by the Minister is to discuss FDI stock that has already been officially invested and is part of the country’s GDP, again, as Table 2 shows, if he had spoken in 1990 when Zambia ranked number 4 in SSA, the numbers would have supported his statement. But speaking in the period 2016 when Zambia’s ranking fell to 10, with FDI stock of only about $15 billion, compared to Ghana’s $30 billion, it is perplexing that the Minister should make a public statement like he did on our behalf as citizens who are worried about the country’s eroding global and regional competitiveness.

Table 2: Zambia’s inward Foreign Direct Investment stock in $ Millions

 Ranking Number  Country 1990 Country 2016
1 South Africa 9,210 South Africa 136,837
2 Nigeria 8,539 Nigeria 94,184
3 Liberia 2,732 Angola 49,545
4 Zambia 2,655 Mozambique 31,830
5 Ghana 29,882
6 Congo 25,882
7 Sudan 25,467
8 DRC 21,187
9 Tanzania 19,818
10     Zambia 14,936

Source: Unctastat

The Emperor’s new suit

In the Emperor’s Suit story, two weavers tricked the Emperor in believing that they were experts who would make a wonderful suit for him that was invisible to anyone unfit for their position, stupid or incompetent. So, the Emperor allowed the weavers to go ahead and make the suit. When the Emperor parades in front of his people in the new suit at midday, there was no one who raised his voice to say that they did not see any suit on the Emperor because they feared reprisal or as stupid. Then the child shouted, “But the Emperor has nothing on his body.” The illustration of this is that we can all leave you alone and continue to say you are wearing a new suit. But there are long term consequences, perhaps too ghastly to contemplate. The best is for you to allow us to check on you and advise before you disgrace yourself in public. Instead of extolling ourselves, we should be mindful and focus on working hard so that at least we remain in the top five ranking or number 3 as was the case in 1990.

So, it is not true that Zambia is one of the most favorable investment destinations. And this is not being negative. Investors like the truth. They don’t like lies, dishonesty, dark cleverness, careless talk and inflating the FDI environment. The Minister can be proud that Zambia is attracting some of the best investors but they are largely in minerals. This should be complemented by investment in the manufacturing sector which, like mining can also create more and sustainable jobs. The Minister cannot be drinking champagne over lopsided investment. Equally, the dollar values are simply too low. We can be forced to believe that Zambia is the best investment destination and our children will believe that and fail to think and innovate in future. On the other hand, if we speak the truth and find solutions, I think it is better than fooling ourselves when numbers do not support our claims. We can all be loyal to our country by supporting lies. But of what use is this kind of culture which makes us gain by living a life of lies but makes us lose our soul?

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45 COMMENTS

  1. When one is honest with his or herself only then can one improve their current state be it financial or whatever. In this case we have individuals who just because in their own personal capacity by virtue of their top positions in govt which see them driving luxury air con SUVs, get huge salaries and allowances, travel abroad in business and first class accumulating air miles to attend seminars and conferences on subjects they never implement at home in Zambia and because they live in mansions where they have isolated themselves from the masses and are completely out of touch with the ordinary Zambian- such people will always make false claims and this keeps our nation in its gridlocked state!
    Paradigm shift is required!

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    • There are so many figures & analysts out there & it will a big error & irresponsible to just pick numbers from 1 and say the Minister lied. E.g. Frontera puts Zambia @ #4 out of 10 best investment destinations in Africa. Even from the authors numbers 15 or 17 out of 54 countries in Africa is not a small achievement. That’s 75% score & you say that does constitute 1 of the best? Let’s not be negative about our country. That’s why foreign investors who see the opportunities come & grab everything because we as locals are blinded by this unexplainable negativity about our country. We are a blessed nation & God continues to bless us. Amen.

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    • So, what’s so special about DFIs when we cannot put our house in order to allow ourselves to run the economy. We do not save but just squander money on booze and women. If citizens had a zeal to save moneys and venture into capital projects we would have long advanced in development, but alas- more people just enjoy, others just complain yet others are just stealing for pleasure! We need to change and this should start from the top, let there be deliberate policies to guide and propel us to victory.

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    • Let us differentiate between FAVORABLE and FAVORED. You can have a very favorable environment for investments and still not favored by investors. For instance, investors can choose to take their money to DRC despite the less than ideal environment for FDI in DR Congo with all it’s Political and Security instabilities, than say Malawi or Zambia.

      Is it because many investors can easily cut Conners in DRC than Zambia or Malawi? Well, not sure if that’s the case. Or is it because other Countries have done a good job marketing themselves to investors? Well, that could be it. So, what I am trying to say is that there is nothing wrong with what the Minister said. Attracting FDI to your Country goes beyond just having a favorable environment for investments. Zambia can have the most…

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    • Continue:

      …FAVORABLE investment environment in this part of Africa and still not FAVORED by investors. That’s not necessarily a lie or lying stating so.

      The figures the author has given only shows which Countries are favored for FDI at a particular time but not reflect the reality of what drives FDI to particular country or region.

      To me, “FAVORABLE” has more to do with RULES, REGULATIONS, LAWS, LABOUR, FINANCIAL INSTITUTIONS, SECURITY, on and on. So, how does Zambia measure up on this matrix? And I am sure that’s what the Minister was speaking to. Nonetheless, could it be that the past few contentious election cycles and the relentless negative campaigns outside Zambia by the likes of HH & Company have contributed to Zambia being looked at as not being conducive for…

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    • Continue:

      ….for investments current and therefore not favored at the moment? The answer is YES. But that doesn’t mean the Minister was lying.

      The author may have a point if he/she can counter the Minister with such facts and factors than simply pulling out figures without putting them into their proper context. Let us avoidance DATA DUMPING and think that it makes sense.

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    • Here even business ideas are either stolen by the Bank staff and fail because they are not theirs or they are killed at birth because of jealousy by the same people. I am talking about stupid institutions like CEEC & DBZ.

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  2. I thought the Minister said Southern Africa and not Africa. Can you do your research based on what the Minister said. This how people fail even simple exams. Can you also state your name and not hide behind an organization. From what see you are the one who needs to be held accountable. You expect a Minister who is marketing his Country go and say Zambia is the worst Investment destination?

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  3. I give you this one Corporate Governance … There are times I disagree with you, I think this is the second article am in line with you in addition to the agriculture one!

    “our children will believe that and fail to think and innovate in future”

    When our leaders open their mouths anyhow to show that they are working, they truly worsen the situation and Zambia’s ranking is driven further down because INNOVATION is usurped from it’s citizens who cannot apply there minds to innovate outside the box.

    IT IS A SHAME – that a minister with all his resources at his disposal can open his mouth to disgrace us all in front of the world. Has he not got the idea that we live in an information age where everything can be fact checked?

    I support PF, but do not condone ministers who…

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    • Guys… use the same table and remove countries that are not in Southern Africa… THE POINT IS ZAMBIA IS SLIDING DOWN

      1990 – 2nd in Southern Africa

      2000 – 5th in Southern Africa

      2016 – 4th in Southern Africa

      We have fallen from grace, the only glimmer of hope is that Zambia has improved a level in 2016 and COULD BE what the minister is overjoyed about.

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    • I encourage such analysis but I also like broadening the scopes for potential pitfalls. These FDIs are not bringing sustainable change in Zambia. I mean zero sustainable development. Like trump said, his friends go to Africa to make money. Apart from pittances of wages which are spent on imported consumer goods, we as a nation are left with an empty sack every time. Nothing to show for in terms of sustainable development.

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  4. I don’t Botswana, Lesotho and Swaziland. It appears the table favours countries with seaports otherwise I will wait for others to express their opinion.

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  5. This is fake news. Zambia is the best sh!thole in the world. The kwacha is stronger than all the other currencies put together. Like the eagle on our flag, we have triumphed over corruption cholera and street vendors.

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  6. the ministers statement is and i quote “Hon Christopher Yaluma has said Zambia remained one of the most favorable Investment destination in Southern Africa”. the problem is most of us Zambians don’t read. From the two tables provided the minister is right as only south Africa and Mozambique have attracted more FDI in the sub region. So where is the argument Mr Governance?

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    • @Jame Moonga, thank you for that clarification. The author seems to have chosen to overlook what the Minister said so that he can call other people liars. Choosing to overlook is equally telling lies.

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  7. Ba Lusakatimes educate your contributors on the need to read properly. Yesterday you had an article which said government had spent 1 billion on cholera today you have agreed to publish article which in a similar way is arguing on something that was never said

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  8. IF YOU WANT TO HIDE ANYTHING FROM UPND CARDERS PUT IT IN WRITING…THEY FAIL TO COMPREHEND SIMPLE FACTS……”Zambia remains ONE OF THE MOST favourable Investment destination in Southern Africa-Yaluma” SIMPLE ENGLISH ..MULETUSEBENYA BABAAA!!!!!!
    The table you have dropped here are for all Sub-Saharan African countries. You can do better by giving us the data for South African countries..

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  9. CHOOSING TO OVERLOOK WHAT THE MINISTER SAID, AND LIE THROUGH YOUR NOSTRILS MR GOVERNANCE FIMOFIMO IS TANTAMOUNT TO WITCHCRAFT….YOU ARE A WITCH !!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!

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  10. My suggestion to LT is to remove this article and ask the author to apologize for attempting to mislead people. Then he should be taken to some Primary School to be taught Geography.

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  11. The sample above picks 17 counties in Africa and yet Africa is a continent of 54 countries. So if we were to rank Zambia out of 54 states, it still remains a favourable destination for FDI and to put it in minister’s context, one of the most favourable destinations in Southern Africa.
    Why do you want to paint Zambia black?

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  12. What we should be doing as Zambians is a little more research when someone especially ministers tell us something. I have used other analytic tools by African economic outlook

    Based on these guys and out of 10 southern African countries from 2010 to 2015, Zambia has averaged fourth. So not bad, in fact we had been third for three years in a row from 2012 to 2014.

    Based on these facts, am afraid Minister Yaluma is right.

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    • @NSCS, that is what you should have done before your earlier post but you said the Minister disgraced us. Even before posting let us do some research. It is not fair even how the article started. The so called Mr.Governance wants the president to hold the Minister accountable for his ill researched article. He called the Minister a liar but the facts are showing who the liar is. Can this Mr. Governance come out and say whether or Nigeria, Liberia, Ghana are Southern African Countries etc. Did Mr. Governance give the information intentionally to insult our intelligence? Notice whenever Godfrey Miyanda writes an article, he sticks around the blog to guide the debate.

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    • Am a man… I take responsibility of my actions very seriously and correct them where I feel incorrect. So I did and reversed my earlier assertions. How many people in Zambia do that?

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  13. I’m starting to like you even though you are a faceless man. What you are saying is true. The only thing you could have done is provide criteria on how you *choose* the 17 countries out of the 46/48 countries of sub-Saharan Africa.
    I agree with you.

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  14. Who is/are Economic.Governance?? One thing I learnt in school during my “Media Literacy” class was, you should know who the author of the article or paper you are reading. That is the most cardinal thing. Why is the author hiding his name?? As long as we don’t see the author’s name, the article is written in bad faith and is mere propaganda.

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    • He could be a civil servant and he’s afraid of losing his miserable job. Probably in foreign service.

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  15. This man ‘THE WRITER IS A TYPICAL UPND zealot. His previous ARTICLE was all misleading.I guess He’s wearing a upnd t-shirt light now. I can feel HIS bitterness on EVERYTHING that PF do.Grow up MR BITTER MAN otherwise you’ll die like that.ECL beyond 2021

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    • He’s trying to confuse the readers by writing such a long article. He could have done us a favour by summarizing.

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  16. One commentator put it this way-When the FTJ persecutions started, they would shout “thief, thief” everyday until people started to believe it. And they did, even with a court acquittal, FTJ is still labelled a thief even in his grave by certain people. Today, the attention has turned to ECL. It all started when a certain opposition leader famously said, “PF has failed, totally, totally failed!!”. If such sentiments are repeated every day, the plan is people will believe. Sad that the chief trumpeter of such propaganda, post newspaper, is no more. But the misinformation has turned from petition, rigging, dictatorship (which has cost certain compromised clergy their positions!) and now corruption. Sadly, the author above is but a protagonist of this vile agenda.

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    • And the fire tenders…? How do you explain such imbec!lity.

      Make no mistake I support my president ECL. But some ministers are taking a p!ss like Zambia is not there country.

      So basically am disagreeing with you here. Chiluba was convicted by a London Court.

      Failure is in so many permutations. I cannot say the president has failed but elements in the PF are vile and not good for the people. The president is on record acknowledging that, so please do not gloss over reality.

      Thank you

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    • Convicted in a London court??? On Zambian properties??? Which “corruptly acquired” luxury villas were discovered in Europe?? Tell me, do Zambian judges preside over matters British??? Be reasonable, man.

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    • Am pointing out facts… it’s not me to be reasonable. It is what is out there documented.

      Am sorry I am pointing to what is out there.

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    • Below is an excerpt from Chiluba’s trial… what a shame…

      The high court judge Peter Smith found that Chiluba’s salary amounted to £52,500 over the 10 years of his presidency but that he had spent more than £600,000 during the same period in just one jewellery and clothing boutique in Geneva. “He was uniquely positioned to prevent corruption but instead of preventing corruption he actively participated in it,” Smith said in his ruling.

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    • The buck stops with the President. He chooses to surround himself with lazy bums. Guess what? Their laziness represents his best of decisions. Go figure!

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    • @NSCS: $8.5m was found in the ZAMTROP account which FTJ recieved from supporters and funders of MMD. This amount was cleared by the Auditor General, the High Court. Who is Smith to preside over matters Zambian????

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  17. Ati ” Zambia has been overtaken by small countries. Which small countries? Is it in size, economy or population. Avoid assumed superiority complex. We are all equal.

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  18. Nscs really you ar a man and this is how we should be wen we debate thank you man ,One thing about politics in zambia all we think especially the opposition is to scanderise what ever the luring govnt say or do which is very retrograsive

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  19. I need to be educated by the learned colleagues on this platform. Where is Zambia? On the weather Report on the DSTV bouquet, Zambia is placed in East Africa. Some other platforms locate Zambia in Central Africa. Where is Zambia indeed?

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    • Go back to grade 5 atlas and educate yourself if you can’t use the Internet to do your research. Don’t be like kids on zwd who fail to differentiate a credible news from propaganda

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  20. South Africa has been criticized by someone at the same forum for its restrictive regulatory policies on mining. So you wonder what one should do to please these Obasanjo’s people.

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  21. Most of these cadres just rash to condemn or they don’t understand English. The minister did not say “Zambia is the best” but he said “Zambia is one of the most favourable investment destination” this means, there are other countries which may be 5 or 10 or more and either way, the fact that we are amongst the few which are most favourable, its wirthy talking about as we market ourselves. This is backward thinking to argue without direction. Talk good about your country for once, you will loose nothing. This must be a UPND cadres who sees everything in a negative way. I will never waste my vote again on this party. I wish I new in the past that I am associating myself with retrogressive people.

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    • Yes after going through the minister’s speech I find that the guy has only taken the smoke leaving the the fire behind. Obviously this is meant to discredit the government. But remember it’s not the writing that will persuade the masses but what they can touch.

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