President Edgar Lungu has said that the economic diversification in Zambia must be private sector driven and that government has spearheaded private sector facilitation by creating Multifacility Economic Zones(MFEZ),
Speaking today when he officiated at the commissioning of Kingphar Zambia Limited at the Lusaka East Multi-Economic Facility Zone this morning, the President stated that the participation of the private sector in the economy cannot be overemphasized.
“The Participation of the private sector in our economy cannot be overemphasised. For our economy to become resilient, the role of the private sector is inevitable,” said the president.
The President has since challenged the private sector to take advantage of the available market in the pharmaceutical industry, and stated that Governments quest for economic diversification and Job creation through value addition and industrialization needed to be private sector driven .
“This is the sure way we will score success in transforming Zambia into an industrial Hub and government will continue to play a pivotal role in facilitating a conducive business environment for both local and foreign investors.” he said.
“This is in line with the 7th National Development Plan which is premised on a Platform of achieving a resilient and diversified economy without leaving anyone behind. I have no doubt that this aspiration will make our country a prosperous middle income country by 2030.” He added.
President Lungu stated that the project he was commissioning signified the strong Cordial relations that exist between Zambia and china.
“It is gratifying to note that this year, 2018, marks 40 years of enhanced cooperation between the two countries. This investment by Kingphar in the Health Sector, Particularly the manufacturing industry is aimed at further promoting Sino-Zambia Cooperation. ” he said.
And the President was delighted to note that the project would create employment for the locals.
“I have been informed that 200 Zambian Staff will be employed and 17 Chinese expatriates who will oversee skills development and knowledge transfer. ” he said.
The President Lungu also expressed concern that despite the presence of some companies in the pharmaceutical sector in the nation, Pharmaceutical products were still being imported.
“Zambian’s continue to have a yawning market which needs to be exploited for more investment in the pharmaceutical industry. I wish therefore to urge potential investors to take advantage of the Multi Facility Zone facilitated by My government, to invest in the pharmaceutical industry. ” He said.
“It is also worth noting that a viable pharmaceutical industry in Zambia in Particular and Africa as a whole will impact significantly on the Health system in the African Continent. This will enable effective response to our people’s health needs and will also contribute to Africa’s overall Social- Economic development.” He added.
The President further announced that his Government in collaboration with the European Union was supporting the Zambia Medicines regulatory authority (ZAMRA) to construct the National quality control laboratory.
He stated that once operational, the National quality control laboratory would not only ensure quality medicines but would also provide easier access to the facility by local manufacturing industries.
“It is also worth noting that the process of the World Health Organisation (WHO) Recognition and ISO certification for quality assurance for this project is already ongoing. I urge the Minister of Health to ensure that this process is expedited. ” He said.
the President Lungu made an assurance that his Government was committed to the growth of the local pharmaceutical industry.
“In this regard, government is currently in dialogue with the United Nations Industrial Organisation (UNIDO) to support our country in providing a technical framework aimed at improving access to quality and affordable essential medicines.” said the President.
President Lungu stated that his Government remained resolute to ensuring increased availability and access to safe, efficacious and quality medicines to its people.
“It is for that reason that we have increased the budgetary allocation for essential medicines and medical supplies under the Ministry of Health from K769 Million in 2017 to K1. 2 Billion in 2018.” He said.
And Minister of Health Chitalu Chilufya said President Lungu has shown commitment to the transformational agenda of the health sector.
And Kingphar Zambia Limited Chief Executive Officer Wang Shunxue said he is ready to work with the ministry of health to improve the sector.
Chinese Ambassador to Zambia Yang Youming said Kingphar will employ more than 200 Zambian staff and enable government to collect tax worth 6 million dollars per year.
Lusaka province Minister Bowman Lusambo said the level of investment in the country is due to the good leadership and policies that president Lungu has shown in the few years he has been in power.
Also Chongwe Member of Parliament Japhen Mwakalombe in whose constituency the pharmaceutical is located thanked President Lungu for the unprecedented investment undertaken in Chongwe.