Power and Politics

Hichilema calls for first-rate technology in Zambia’s quest for development, seeks favourable credit rating


President Hakainde Hichilema has called for mutual partnerships in the exploitation of Zambia’s mineral potential for a win-win compromise.

President Hichilema told delegates during the European Union-Zambia Copperbelt business forum on Wednesday that more partnerships were needed to the running of mining business.

“There is need for fairness in the capital price and we want investors who invest for mutual benefits that can allow the participation of Zambians in the extraction of minerals and other economic ventures,” he said.

President Hichilema said Zambia was looking forward to a first-rate technology through partnerships to extract minerals that could result in mutual economic benefits.

“We don’t want a second rate and but first-rate technology, we don’t have cutting rate technology to exploit our economic potential,” he said adding that the country’s mineral maps were very old.

President  Hichilema wanted  technology to come and widen  the search for critical minerals  like lithium, copper and cobalt among others.

Read more : Copperbelt Minister, Matambo, unveils Hichilema’s itinerary, as president undertakes five-day tour of region

“This  is the  reason we want a long lasting relationship so that we can do processes with precision. EU-Zambia partnership must strategically shift  to  partnerships and  joint ventures that  both   profits and risks.

“That is what true friends do, the global business community must be ready to partner with us  to enhance capital that comes at a fair price,” the Head of State said.

He observed that African development had stagnated because “we pay a premium ”for accessing capital.

The President also expressed concerns with credit ratings, adding that the country with seven transitions like Zambia should have rated highly because the country had had peaceful transitions.

“We have had seven transitions in the country and this has not been associated with blood shed, this should have been considered as an asset we can’t get zero credit zero, but this country should have valued differently,” he said.

Earlier on arrival, Kitwe Mayor,Mpansa  Mwaya, told the President that she was happy that he was committed to resolving the water challenges affecting the mining town.

In response, President Hichilema said he understood the challenges residents were facing in accessing water as he called for strong working relationship between the local authority and the central government.

He is expected to later commission Copperbelt Energy Corporation (CEC) 60-megawatt solar project in Kitwe.

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