THE PRESIDENTIAL TRIP TO CONGO DR

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THE PRESIDENTIAL TRIP TO CONGO DR
THE PRESIDENTIAL TRIP TO CONGO DR

Africa-Press – Zambia. I have never had a problem with Presidential travels, this was my position even with the previous regimes. What matters are the results from such trips and in most cases these are long term results. The Congo DR trip by President Hakainde Hichilema is perhaps the most important he has ever undertaken and there are four major reasons:

Congo DR is a huge potential market for Zambia’s agriculture products estimated at $1.5 billion per year. While we have been exporting agriculture products through Kasumbalesa, these mostly target Katanga region and we have not even saturated this provincial market. Direct engagement with the Congolese President will set the tone for enhanced trade. Anything that is spearheaded by Presidents attracts big business firms and speeds up formalisation of trade agreements. We have to secure the $1.5 billion food market

Congo DR is the largest producer of copper in Africa. Zambia is strategically positioning itself to be the hub of electric vehicle production in Africa. We need to establish strong ties not only for production gains but also for market given the huge population Congo DR has.

The Congo DR/ Zambia border conflict is something that needs to be settled once and for all as it can stand in the way of smooth trade. Hence it is important that this issue is addressed urgently.

Apart from the three issues raised, Congo DR is hosting a business forum attracting big business firms, hence it is an opportunity to market our potential for investment as well as trade.

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