Tuesday, May 28, 2024

Minister of Finance Situmbeko Musokotwane projects sustainable economic growth in 2023

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The government has projected that the country is expected to register sustainable economic growth this year due to a number of factors that have been put in place to enhance development.

Government is therefore projecting an economic growth attainment of four percent for the gross domestic product (GDP), reduce inflation rate to between six and seven percent and maintain above three months import cover by the end of the year 2023.

Minister of Finance and National Planning, Situmbeko Musokotwane, attributed the projected positive rise to a number of reasons, among them, the conclusion of the debt restructuring programme with the official creditors that will result in macro economic stability for the country.

Dr Musokotwane said this in Lusaka today during the town hall forum on the 2022 economic performance and 2023 budget execution.

He added that the 100 percent disbursement of the Constituency Development Fund (CDF) also contributed to the positive performance of the budget as it benefited the social sector.

The Minister of Finance however noted that despite the substantial economic growth that the country recorded in 2022 especially in the social, tourism, information, communication and technology sectors, the agriculture and mining industries registered sluggish growth.

He explained that this is despite the significant contribution that the agriculture and the mining sectors have towards fostering economic development of the country.

“Generally, the budget performance for 2022 was satisfactory as for the first time in many years, we have seen positive trends in budget execution. This is because money was spent on the activities that it was budgeted for compared to the way it was done in the past where money was being spent on programmes that are outside the budget,” he said.

Dr Musokotwane added that with the ambitious programme to increase copper production to about three million tonnes in the next ten years, the government is also putting in place long and short-term measures to address the challenges in the energy sector by attracting more investments.

He said for the year 2023, government is also focusing more in resuscitating the Private Public Partnership agreements to support key capital infrastructure projects such as the Ndola-Lusaka dual carriage way and the Chingola-Kasumbalesa road among others.

He added that the government will continue embracing feedback from the private sector as it executes the national budgets and different development plans.

And Bank of Zambia Deputy Governor, Francis Chipimo, said a stable exchange rate and manageable inflation rate in 2022 played a role in achieving most of the targeted development goals in the financial sector for the year 2022.

Dr Chipimo noted that the sector also recorded a positive performance on the non-performing loans.

Meanwhile, Zambia Revenue Authority (ZRA) Commissioner General, Dingani Banda, bemoaned low levels of tax paying compliance among the eligible taxpayers, which is currently standing at 0.8 percent.

Mr Banda added that the small and medium enterprise sector is not contributing much to the country’s revenue due to non-compliance despite recording growth.

He noted that this is why the authority has started investing in an effective data management system to address the problem of non-compliance thereby improving the country’s revenue collection.

Meanwhile, Mr Banda disclosed that generally, ZRA recorded an increase in revenue collection from over K91 billion in 2021 to over K103 billion in 2022.

And Lusaka Securities Exchange Chief Executive Officer, Philip Chitalu, has advised the government to consider opening up long-term investments such as the auctioning of bonds to the private sector to attract a different market.

At the same event, Policy Monitoring and Research Institute Director, Sydney Mwamba, praised the government for policy consistency in the implementation of various development plans.

Mr Mwamba also urged the government to continue with its bilateral and multilateral cooperation, adding that this has brought about investor confidence in the country’s economy.

8 COMMENTS

  1. Job well done New Dawn Govt. and Hon.Dr.Musokotwane… regular communication with the citizenry and the business community is absolutely imperative…Let these Town Hall events continue to be held every quarter so that our people have accurate information about how their economy is doing and NOT listening only to doomsayers….who got us in the economic mess in the first place.

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  2. You politicians should stop embellishing dumb messages in fancy verbose. Just tell us there will be growth and give us the figures.
    What is “sustainable economic growth”?
    Something to impress the electorate with? Just tell us the percentage

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    • #Mob injustice… I am not well educated but I can still tell all this is guess work hoping for a miracle… nothing short of a miracle.

  3. Excuse me Bwana Musk’twane, sustainable growth is not a 1yr measure.Sustainable means 2,3 ,4 or 5yrs of healthy growth with verifiable figures.No misleading semantics please.

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  4. How are these projections going to be realistic if the IMF director give a bleak future for most economies in the world. China, the eu and the us have poor projections for their economies. We depend on these countries for our growth. So how can we do better when our masters are not doing well?

  5. No mention of the exchange rate? When do we expect the Kwacha to gain? Someone please this is a very important subject which sadly the media have not looked into? Other countries follow their exchange rate on a daily basis, but here we appear to only look at it when it goes low.

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