The Zambia Association of Manufacturers (ZAM) has called for targeted incentives to companies wanting to establish value addition industries.
ZAM president, Ashu Sagar says doing so will help the country develop its own value chains and ultimately enhance the inflow of the world’s major currencies such as the US dollar.
Mr Sagar said in interview that creation of value chains remains the plea of his association that once industrial value chains are established, it will be easier to understand how to create the much needed incentives of taxation.
“As a country we need to concentrate on developing these value chains. Without that plan we will not be able as a country to understand how to create meaningful incentives or an environment for people to be part of it,” he said.
Mr Sagar said there is a lot to learn from what the Democratic Republic of Congo-DRC has done when it is comes to developing value chains for electric vehicle batteries.
He said the challenge has been that, a lot of attention has been paid to extractive industries alone and neglecting incentives that can promote value addition to raw materials from such industries.
“Once we develop our value chains, we start seeing how each and every portion of the sector can contribute to that value chain.
“If you develop value chain for example for Copper, from the backward industry to the mine and the forward industry for copper the value chain exists. How does an SME or a big corporate like a mining house be part of the value chain,” Mr Sagar said.
Mr Sagar also called for the skills development policy because the current skills being generated are not meeting industrial demand.
He said the introduction of market demand skills is vital if value chains are to be created.
“When we look at the greater picture of development, we cannot add value if you do not have skills,” he said.
Mr Sagar said the next stage of Zambia’s stage of development can only be successful if value chains are identified and also put in place the right skills.