Power and Politics

China-Zambia bilateral trade sees 77.6% increase, Hichilema praises strong investment bonds


President Hakainde Hichilema says bilateral trade between China and Zambia has grown exponentially in the last 60 years of friendship, noting a remarkable 77.6 percent increase.

Hichilema said: “Trade between China and Zambia has surged from US$3.79 billion in 2017 to US$6.73 billion in recent years.”

The President made these remarks while presiding at the Zambia-China Quality Development Forum and Economic Exhibition (ZCQDFEE) held in Lusaka on Wednesday.

The forum, themed “Innovation and Sustainability: A New Vision for Future Energy,” took place at the Mulungushi International Conference Centre (MCC).

He underscored Zambia’s significance as a key investment destination for Chinese firms, with over 600 companies already established in the country.

“This surge underscores the importance that China places on Zambia as a partner in its development agenda. In response, we must reciprocate with hard work and innovation,” Hichilema stated.

Highlighting the substantial investments, Hichilema mentioned that Zambia and Chinese companies had signed deals worth $1 billion across various sectors, including manufacturing, over the years.

Hichilema assured that the Zambia-China relationship would deepen further to deliver value. “Zambia, China, and Tanzania are working diligently to upgrade the TAZARA corridor, especially the railway line,” he noted.

He urged government officials to nurture relationships and avoid undermining them, citing the benefits from his trip to China in September last year, which upgraded the bilateral relationship.

The President urged citizens to unite during challenging times such as the ongoing drought.

“More investment, projects, and transactions in our country will boost our economy and the government will double the country’s economy,” he expressed.

Hichilema further announced plans for all 10 provinces to host Multi Facility Economic Zones.

Read More: Zambia-China trade climbs 30 percent, hits US$6.73 billion in 2022

Chinese Ambassador to Zambia, Du Xiaohui, disclosed that Zambia’s exports to China in 2023 amounted to $4.39 billion, while China’s exports to Zambia stood at $1 billion.

“China is advancing its cooperation zones and other projects such as the Kasama Airport, Chingola-Kasumbalesa Road, and China Non-Ferrous mine, which has pledged an additional $1.3 billion investment in Zambia,” Xiaohui revealed.

During the event, the Zambia Development Agency announced that Zambia’s committed investment pledges for the period 2021-2024 reached US$50 billion, compared to US$35 billion in 2011-2021.

The Agency highlighted that Zambia’s Gross Domestic Product (GDP) grew by US$12 billion between 2021 and 2024, from US$18 billion to $30 billion.

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