United States hails resilience of Zambia’s economy, pats Hichilema’s leadership


The United States (US)-Africa Business Center president, Kendra Geither, says the Zambian economy has shown signs of resilience, with the debt restructuring process now putting the country on strong footing.

Geither observed that the Zambian economy had shown resilience despite not many African countries currently recording strong performance.

She said this on Monday during the US Chamber of Commerce roundtable discussion on the economic and fiscal outlook for Zambia held on the side-lines of the ongoing Spring Meetings of the International Monetary Fund (IMF) and World Bank Group in Washington.

“To commit the government to a plan and agenda for reform says a lot about the leadership of President Hichilema and your team.

“Good leadership is vital in creating economic conditions and opportunities for trade and investment to take place and for the work that the Zambian Government is doing in partnering with regional leaders to development infrastructure, agriculture, digital advancements, and the Lobito corridor,” Geither said.

Meanwhile, US Treasury Under Secretary Jay Shambaugh conveyed the US appreciation of how Zambia has been able to remain resilient under difficult circumstances.

Shambaugh said this during the US-Zambia bilateral meeting.

He also took the opportunity to state the American willingness to help combat economic crimes and promote interagency coordination.

On the Lobito corridor project, Shambaugh reiterated the will to push the agenda as quickly as possible through a Public Private Partnership (PPP) route.

Responding to a question on the debt restructuring process, Finance and National Planning Minister, Situmbeko Musokotwane indicated that 77 percent of eligible debt had been negotiated while another 23 percent has to be negotiated, mostly with commercial creditors.

“To improve resource mobilisation, the government, through ZRA, is in the process of appointing fiscal agents,” he said.

The Minister announced that a meeting with bond holders would soon be convened with a view of concluding the process as soon as possible.

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