The Minister of Commerce, Trade and Industry of Zambia, Hon. Chipoka Mulenga, called for the European Union (EU) to provide easy and affordable credit financing to Zambian youths. The Minister made the appeal during the Africa Investment Forum and Awards held in Paris under the theme “Political perspective towards a Europe-Africa partnership”. The forum brought together over 700 business executives and investors eager to explore investment opportunities in Africa.
Mulenga stated that lack of access to easy financing has kept the youthful population of Zambia out of employment and entrepreneurship opportunities. He added that if the youths are provided with the resources and finances, they will engage in meaningful activities that will help resolve the problem of unemployment levels in the country. The Minister highlighted that working with partners like the EU will help in laying a strong foundation for Zambia’s energetic youths to develop socio-economic solutions on the continent.
Mulenga also expressed concern over the lack of access to European markets by African countries despite the various signed trade facilitation agreements. He seized the opportunity to woo French investment in Zambia, saying that the country has prioritized good governance, zero tolerance to corruption, protection of the private sector, and economic stability.
Zambia’s Ambassador to France, Dr. Christine Kaseba Sata, spoke on the sidelines of the forum and called for deeper and strengthened Africa-EU partnerships on a mutual and beneficial basis. Dr. Kaseba said that Zambia is endowed with natural resources and urged the EU to empower its citizens so that they can get value for their resources.
In conclusion, Minister Mulenga’s appeal for easy and affordable credit financing from the EU highlights the need for a more inclusive approach to sustainable economic growth in Zambia. The Minister’s call aligns with the objectives of the Africa Investment Forum and Awards, which is aimed at bringing the world’s markets together and promoting investment in African countries.