Minister of Transport and Logistics Frank Tayali says Government intends to implement an intermodal network that links road, rail, air, and marine for transporting cargo and passengers within and through Zambia.
Mr. Tayali said there is a need to consider Zambia’s position of being landlocked to being land-linked which creates abundant opportunities for improving and linking transport systems.
Speaking when he officiated at the Meet and Greet the Industry Breakfast meeting held yesterday at Taj Pamodzi Hotel, the Minister stated that Zambia is well-placed to facilitate trade in the African Continental Free Trade Area.
He stated that Zambia is a Corridor Network in Southern African Development Community and Common Market for Eastern (SADC) and Southern Africa (COMESA).
He further stated that Zambia is endowed with incredible investment prospects that drive and support developments in the various sectors of the economy.
Mr. Tayali said the sectors of the economy which once harnessed, will see a Zambia that will address issues of job creation and poverty reductions.
“I am reliably informed that the upcoming Land-Linked Zambia Conference has already attracted active participation from the Ports of Beira and Nacala in Mozambique, Durban-South Africa, Walvis Bay-Namibia, Dar-es-salaam-Tanzania, all of whom have a Corridor that they serve that passes through Zambia,” he said.
Mr. Tayali added that the Corridors bring with them numerous business and investment opportunities for the country.
The Minister highlighted that the conference and exhibition scheduled for December 2021 rightly dubbed as Land-Linked Zambia 2021 will underline the vital role Zambia plays in the global and regional commodity value chain and the movement and storage of goods.
He commended the Transport and Logistics industry players for showing commitment by being present at the event and organizing it.
Mr. Tayali assured the stakeholders of the UPND Government’s support in providing strategic direction to accelerate development within and beyond borders.
He stated that the breakfast meeting is the beginning of a new era of co-operation among stakeholders.
He said the eagerness and passion to work together by all stakeholders in the transport and logistics industry resonates well with the new administration.
Mr. Tayali said despite the devastating COVID-19 pandemic, Zambia is ready to develop the transport and logistic sector by working hand-in -hand using the stakeholder’s strengths, abilities, and resources.
“As the Minister responsible for transport and logistics, I am pleased to see such a representation of different stakeholders in the industry coming together to explore more affordable and reliable business opportunities,” he said.
And Petroleum Tankers Association of Zambia (PTAZ) Secretary-General Benson Tembo said local transporters are benefitting far less from the country’s immense public investment in road infrastructure than their foreign counterparts.
Mr. Tembo said the country has been spending colossal sums of money on imported transport services because the bulk of the transportation business is structured by foreigners.
He thanked President Hakainde Hichilema for adding Logistics to the Ministry of Transport as it was a missing link to the Ministry of Transport.
The event attended by many transports and logistics stakeholders marked the official launch of the Land-Linked Zambia 2021 Exhibition scheduled for 2nd to 3rd December 2021.