President Lungu has reiterated his government’s commitment to ensuring that bottlenecks hindering investment, especially in rural parts of the country, are addressed.
Speaking when he commissioned the Multi Million dollar Mansa sugar Plant in Chembe district of Luapula Province yesterday, the President said it is a well known fact that industrial activities are mostly focused in urban and peri urban areas, and predominantly along the line of rail, which has resulted in increased rural – urban migration as people, especially the youth, move to urban areas in search of jobs and business opportunities.
He bemoaned the trend which he observed has caused congestion in towns and cities, triggering pressure on government to provide adequate social amenities to the people.
He stated that in order to address the rural – urban drift, government was committed to providing an enabling environment for rural industrialisation to flourish.
He announced that Government had created programs such as the development of farming blocks, value chain cluster programmes as well as establishment of industrial yards and parks in all provinces, all aimed at promoting rural industrialisation.
And President Lungu has expressed joy that the Sakiza Spinning group, proprietors of Mansa Sugar, have responded to his governments call for the private sector to leverage the conducive business environment and natural climate that Zambia has to offer to achieve the nation’s industrialisation agenda.
“It is gratifying to note that the Sakiza spinning group of companies whose headquarters is located in Kitwe, has ventured into diversification from its traditional business such as cotton spinning and packaging through strongpak to sugar cane growing and processing.”
“This is indeed commendable because Sakiza spinning group has answered my governments continued call for diversification, and most importantly into agriculture and agro processing,” he said.
He stated that it gave him immense pleasure to note the magnitude of investment which was being pumped into the project stating that it was a clear reflection of the nation’s fertile investment climate to stir business growth.
From an initial 28 million united States dollars, the Mansa Sugar project has been raised to a hundred million dollars of which 50 million has already been invested.
The project has so far created over 1,200 jobs for the people of Luapula Province and is expected to employ over 3000 when it reaches full capacity which has elated area Member of Parliament Hon. Sebastian Kopulande and Luapula Province Minister, Hon. Nickson Chilangwa.