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Zambia Land Alliance raises concerns over proposed 99 years land lease to Vietnamese investor


The Zambia Land Alliance (ZLA) has expressed alarm over a proposed 99-year land lease to VietZam Diversified Development Corporation Limited, spanning three provinces.

A Vietnamese investor plans to inject US$72 billion into a high-technology mixed agriculture project across Luapula, Northern, and Muchinga provinces over a 20-year period.

The project supposedly aims to generate up to 300,000 direct and indirect jobs, with 98 percent designated for Zambians once operational.

Patrick Musole, Executive Director of ZLA, issued a statement in Lusaka on Saturday emphasizing the need for responsible use of Zambia’s natural resources in alignment with national laws and policies.

“While Zambia benefits from foreign direct investment, allocating six million hectares of land to one company for 99 years contradicts the spirit of our National Lands Policy and is irresponsible,” Musole stated.

Read More: Socialist party demands deep probe of $72 billion Vietnamese investment pledge, claims too good to be true

He referenced Objective No. 5 of the National Lands Policy, which aims to regulate land ownership by non-Zambians and limit the extent and tenure of land leases.

“The intent of the National Lands Policy is to reduce the size of land allocated to foreign investors and shorten lease periods,” Musole explained.

Musole questioned the rationale behind the Zambia Development Agency’s decision to grant such a large land allocation for nearly a century.

“What project requires 99 years to mature? How will this impact local populations currently residing on these lands?” he queried.

Highlighting the importance of land as Zambia’s finite resource for future generations, Musole urged the Zambia Development Agency (ZDA) to collaborate closely with the Ministry of Lands and Natural Resources and the Ministry of Agriculture to ensure projects align with national laws and policies.

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