Govt laments inefficiencies in border management of trading activities


Finance and National Planning Minister, Situmbeko Musokotwane, says there is need to address the issue of delayed clearance of transactions at the borders, as the development has potential to negatively affect the economy.

Meanwhile, Home Affairs and Internal Security Minister, Jack Mwimbu, has said that security concerns regarding those trading across borders were real.

Musokotwane at a town hall meeting on Thursday observed that border areas were important because that was where copper exports and others goods went through.

He noted that there were cases where goods would be cleared quickly on the other side but when it came to the Zambian side, the process would take three hours or even days.

Read more: Govt plans townhall meeting to streamline business facilitation at borders, other exit ports

“The border areas are important in terms of trade in the country. Copper exports go through there including other goods. Imports also use the border areas but if they are not up to standard it means transactions will be adversely affected.

“For example, in other countries they are quickly processed but when it comes to the Zambian side a process that takes eight to 40 minutes will take three to four hours or even days.

This issue needs to be addressed because delays and inconveniences at the border can affect the economy,” Musokotwane said.

On issues of security, Mwiimbu said government had been having bilateral meetings between Zambia and the Democratic Republic of Congo (DRC) to resolve security concerned.

He said the concerns raised by stakeholders were real as it was a difficult situation for Zambian traders to trade with their counterparts in DRC.

“We as government have put in place a lot of measures to ensure we protect the interest of our citizens.

“We have several meetings with our counterparts but unfortunately these have not yielded results which had led to the involvement of SADC to ensure that some of the bottlenecks affecting trade between Zambia and DRC, including other countries in the region are resolved,” Mwiimbu said.

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