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Alba Iulia
Thursday, July 2, 2020

Zambia has made significant strides to transform its economy through use of technology-World Bank Group

Columns Zambia has made significant strides to transform its economy through use of...

The World Bank Group (WBG) says Zambia has made significant strides to transform its economy through use of technology and that the application of various digital platforms in national economic governance had set the country on a path to attaining its economic goals as set out in Vision 2030.

According to the World Bank report released in Washington D.C June 24 entitled “Accelerating Digital Transformation in Zambia: Digital Economy Diagnostic Report”, Zambia’s progress in digitizing national development programmes through SMART Zambia deserved commendation. The strides have since seen Zambia now rank now among the top 10 in the least developed countries category of the E-Government Development Index published by the United Nations.

In a statement released to the media by Mr. Eric Mwanza, the First Secretary – Press and Plubic Relation at the Zambian Embassy in Washington D.C, the 152-page WBG report assessed Zambia’s strengths and weaknesses with respect to five pillars that together formed the foundation upon which the benefits of digital transformation could be realized. These pillars are Digital Infrastructure, Digital Skills, Digital Entrepreneurship, Digital Platforms, and Digital Financial Services.

According to the report, once these services are fully optimized, they would bring about increased efficiency in government services directed towards citizens and the business community.

“The foundation is also now in place to fully leverage digital payments in the public and private sector. This is critical today when contact-less transactions and rapid transmission of funds to the vulnerable are vital to Zambia’s COVID-19 resilience.”

Noted among the many strides made with respect to digital infrastructure, all provincial centers were now linked to the fiber backbone, and the country had a state-of-the-art data center that can be leveraged for government and commercial use. International benchmarks for affordability of broadband have also been met, and the use of mobile phones had increased significantly, reaching 15.5 million mobile subscriptions in 2019, out of which 63.5 percent use broadband.

“The digital infrastructure foundation has thus been built to now focus on the use of the infrastructure, as well as on ensuring the reliability and security of the infrastructure that is in place.”

Substantial progress was also reported to have been made to digitize government salary and pension payments; gains in government-to-business and government-to-government payments; digitizing receipts from businesses and individuals while preliminary data from the digitization of government pay slips showed that transaction costs decreased by 85 percent and several “ghost” workers were identified and removed.

The report recommended that government develop a digital transformation strategy with a dual focus on meeting the 7NDP targets and improving the country’s fiscal space.
“This recommendation is closely aligned with the “doing more with less” mantra introduced by H.E. President Lungu, and it emphasizes the use of digital technology to improve (1) public sector efficiency and effectiveness, (2) private sector productivity, and (3) accountability across both the public and private sectors.”

Noting that digitization was not without risks, the report recommended that Zambia strengthen its cyber security and consumer protection measures.

The report was developed in collaboration with Cabinet Office, seven-line ministries and hundreds of representatives of the Zambian public and private sector.

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20 COMMENTS

  1. Transform? How do you transform an economy in recession? By next year the economy will be in depression. Let’s use appropriate grammar.

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  2. Some people won’t view this as an achievement and a testimony to the improved stardard of living. Its not alot but its sufficient to stimulate more growth in that direction. VIVA ECL

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  3. Now watch the inferior constipated baboons from diaspora and opposition foam at the mouth with anger. These self hating apes are the reason racism cannot end. How do you expect the white race to see you as equal when you have I.diots in diaspora who belittle and despise their own kind.

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  4. Now watch the inferior constipated baboons from diaspora and opposition foam at the mouth with anger. These self hating apes are the reason racism cannot end. How do you expect the whlte race to see you as equal when you have I.diots in diaspora who belittle and despise their own kind.

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  5. Agreed. We have seen marked improvement in the use of technology in a lot of government institutions. RTSA, ZRA are just some of the few we cam point at.
    If we didnt have so much corruption, theft and plunder by an incompetent, immoral pf we would have made tangible progress that the masses would have felt. But as it is the economy is wrecked. Whats the use of having all the technology and yet have mass unemploument, starving masses, and dying industries?
    Its interesting to see how pf caders scramble like hungry vultures that have seen a carcass when they hear even one word of praise from the same organisations they want to call “imperialists” when they say anything that exposes their short comings.

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  6. Where exactly is the country’s state of the art data center?
    How affordable is Broadband in Zambia compared to other countries? Can someone provide figures please.

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  7. You can digitis all information gathering but if you have useless thieving leaders , what use is this digitising. ?
    Donner aid partnering countries thought by helping Zambia digitis revenue collection and governance , the looting will stop and keeping tabs on how revenue is spent on projects will be enhanced , only things have gotten worse under lungu

    The state of the ecomnomy says it all. Even before covid Zambia’s economy was in trauma unit on a ventilator.

    There are some 3rd wold countries with less digitising of data yet they are doing much better than Zambia.

    It’s like giving mukobeko inmates broadband delivered at fiber speeds and expecting them to reform

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  8. At least they appreciate and not only downgrade. Government is definately on the right track with technology and digital transformation. Both play a crucial role in the growth of the economy. By exploiting new technologies in agriculture and manufacturing for example, Zambia can greatly reduce it’s dependency on natural resources and foreign aid.

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  9. Kaizar science has proven that black people are the only pure people on the planet with no ape genes. Why are you spreading falsehoods. Some white people hate black people because Africans walked with Christ.

  10. LT has sometimes blocked or erased some of my postings here. I hv never described anybody as a baboon or an ape. Yet I can see a posting by someone in which both those insulting words appear. I hv since established who controls LT. It doesn’t surprise me at all.

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  11. VISION 2030 – SMART Zambia – “doing more with less” mantra introduced by H.E. President Lungu -A glowing commendation****************HH, IN YOUR FACE!!!!!
    Digitizing national development programmes through SMART Zambia deserved commendation.
    1). Zambia now ranks now among the top 10 in the least developed countries category of the E-Government Development Index published by the United Nations.
    2).SWOT ANALYSIS FOR Digital transformation based on Digital Infrastructure, Digital Skills, Digital Entrepreneurship, Digital Platforms, and Digital Financial Services.
    3). RESULT – increased efficiency in government services directed towards citizens and the business community.
    4). “The foundation is now in place to fully leverage digital payments in the public and private sector…

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  12. VISION 2030 – SMART Zambia

    4). “The foundation is now in place to fully leverage digital payments in the public and private sector especially critical for Zambia’s COVID-19 resilience. 4.1). The use of digital technology to improve (1) public sector efficiency and effectiveness, (2) private sector productivity, and (3) accountability across both the public and private sectors.”

    Report recommended that Zambia strengthen its cyber security and consumer protection measures. (GUARD AGAINST DISRUPTIVE OPPOSTION HACKERS)!!!

    HIS EXCELLENCY PRESIDENT LUNGU IS THE QUIET WORKING GIANT OF ZAMBIA! LONG LIVE ECL!!! PRESIDENT FOR LIFE!!!! GOD BLESS HIM AND PROTECT HIM, IN JESUS NAME WE ASK IT!!!!

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  13. Patriot Abroad

    ” HIS EXCELLENCY PRESIDENT LUNGU IS THE QUIET WORKING GIANT OF ZAMBIA! LONG LIVE ECL!!!….”

    But ever since he became president , everything has worsened , well before covid

    GDP, debt, inflation , unemployment , corruption , tribalisim , foringe reserves , exchange rate ………

    everything worse except lungu and his gangs portfolios

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  14. If a hacker of Electoral Commission of Zambia servers could be caught in broad daylight as the chmn of that same body was watching and nothing was done, wht about an unseen hacker?

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  15. This piece of writing is very misleading. The World Bank Group did not say “Zambia has made significant strides to transform its economy..” This report was compiled by Zambians. All the World Bank did was to put it in a book. Even the language clearly indicates that it is that of Zambians . For instance, phrases like “state of the art data center “doing much less mantra introduced by H.E. President Lungu…” tell you the source of the report. In fact, all the recommendations were made by Zambians.
    The report has a lot half-truths and exaggerations.
    One can even laugh at some the comments. For instance, “Some people won’t view this as an achievement and a testimony to the improved standard of living…”
    How does this report contribute to high standard of living?

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  16. “In a statement released to the media by Mr. Eric Mwanza, the First Secretary – Press and Plubic Relation at the Zambian Embassy in Washington D.C”
    Just this dilutes the heading.No need to read on.

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