Blog entries from: Zambian Economist

A non-partisan website that provides independent economic perspectives on Zambia's progress towards meaningful development for her people.

1 to 10 of 36

December 1 2014

From Zambian Economist Mon Dec 1 2014, 14:14:00

It has been another day of drama today in the chaotic Patriotic Front (PF. New PF president Edgar Lungu held a press briefing where he fired Bridget Atanga, as expected, and appointed Davies Chama the new SG. It is an interesting move. Perhaps Mulenga Sata was sidelined for this role because his loyalty is yet unproven. He also now has the adoption certificate.

As Lungu was announcing the changes a parallel "illegal" PF conference hurriedly cobbled together from Kabwe residents and cadres from the streets were led by Guy Scott. We say "illegal" because it turns out the Lungu camp had already obtained an injunction against the purported conference. The injunction was served on Scott and his friends.

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November 23 2014

From Zambian Economist Sun Nov 23 2014, 19:03:00

Some interesting economic news that may have escaped your attention in the middle of the current political excitment! 

Finance Minister Alexander Chikwanda wants Cabinet to approve a US$100m loan in order to repay another LAP GreenN loan obtained in 2011 to upgrade Zamtel. Chikwanda is apparently seeking $100m from Exim Bank of China to pay ZTE on behalf of LAP GreenN. In June 2010, theLAP GreenN acquired a 75 per cent stake in Zamtel, only to be nationalised in 2012 by PF. (Source : The Post)

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November 22 2014

From Zambian Economist Sat Nov 22 2014, 18:53:00

What is Michael Sata's economic legacy? Here is how the Fredson Yamba (Treasury Secretary) explained it in a press release after Sata died :

Under [Sata's] able leadership and guidance, the economy grew by more than 6 percent per annum, well above the Sub- Saharan Africa average, while inflation has been contained within single-digits. The external sector, especially non-traditional exports grew significantly with agriculture exports exceeding US$1 billion dollars, the highest in the history of the country. This reflects his will for the country to diversify the economy.. As Zambians we also witnessed an unprecedented focus on capital investment in social and economic infrastructure, particularly in health, education, roads, rails, and energy sectors. Recognizing the high unemployment ...

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November 20 2014

From Zambian Economist Thu Nov 20 2014, 17:12:00

Editor's note:  BOZ Governor Michael Gondwe yesterday delivered the following Monetary Policy Statement. It is intended as a quarterly snapshot of the state of the economy, with particular focus on the monetary side. 

The Monetary Policy Committee (MPC) met yesterday, 18 th November 2014, to consider developments in the domestic economy over the third quarter of 2014. In its deliberations, the MPC also considered global economic developments and their likely ramifications on the Central Bank's ability to achieve its core objective of maintaining price stability.

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November 13 2014

From Zambian Economist Thu Nov 13 2014, 14:53:00

Hakainde Hichilema  (UPND) has kicked off the bid for your presidential vote with an interesting press release.  Here are the key quotes relating to the economy :

"It is time to strengthen our economy to allow for job creation, stable prices and wealth redistribution. We can only do this through prudent economic management. We need a strong and stable economy to support our middle class and SMEs which are basically struggling for survival. The middle class and SMEs are key to economic growth. We must support our economic development with a strong agriculture sector, free appropriate and good quality education, and quality healthcare" "We must continue with the infrastructure development but at an accelerated pace. Infrastructure is the conduit for economic development. I have ...

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November 11 2014

From Zambian Economist Tue Nov 11 2014, 15:23:00

Zambia is pregnant with opportunities but the country is facing delicate economic risks that demands focused leadership. Given the strong focus that Michael Sata placed on social infrastructure in transport, health and education, coupled with ramping up of social cash transfers it is reasonable to assume that poverty will hopefully fall in the next few years.

If PF can focus on sorting out the politics of the country, including delivering a new constitution, the future for Zambia may well be very bright. That is a big "if". At the moment the PF leaders appear completely oblivious to the economic potential and risks facing the country. The risks have been there for the last year or so, other risks were triggered by the Budget 2015, and yet others by Michael Sata's death. Surprisingly, though ...

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November 10 2014

From Zambian Economist Mon Nov 10 2014, 16:49:00

Editor's note:  The article below is taken from a VoxEU publication 'Drug quality and global trade' by Attaran et al. It finds that drug quality is poorer among Indian-labelled drugs purchased inside African countries than among those purchased inside India or middle-income countries. 

Data from the Pharmaceutical Security Institute indicate that poor-quality medicines were found in 124 countries in 2011, with the problem more severe in low- and mid-income countries than in developed countries (IOM 2013). While much attention has been focused on intellectual property rights protection (notably issues surrounding the WTO's TRIPS agreement), poor-quality samples were more prevalent in cheap, generic drugs than in expensive, innovator-branded drugs when we tested drug samples ...

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November 4 2014

From Zambian Economist Tue Nov 4 2014, 18:09:00

It has been another day of shocking political incompetence in PF. We woke up to news that Nixon Chilangwa MP had naively taken on the most unwanted job in the country. He had accepted the job of PF Secretary General after Davies Mwila MP turned it down. Mwila's resignation brought much embarrassment to VP Guy Scott. As Chilangwa was accepting the appointment, riots from overnight were still continuing by students and PF cadres.

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From Zambian Economist Tue Nov 4 2014, 14:19:00

The last act of President Michael Sata was to pardon 975 inmates as Zambia marked the National Independence Golden Jubilee. The president has powers under Article 59 of the Constitution of Zambia to exercise the prerogative of mercy, which includes pardoning criminals.

This is the second largest number of inmates released on presidential amnesty in the history of Zambia after more than 2,318 were released in 2012, also by Michael Sata. The total number of criminals allowed back on Zambian streets since the PF came to power now stands at around 5,700.

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November 3 2014

From Zambian Economist Mon Nov 3 2014, 06:54:00

A few stories you may have missed.

There's circus in PF today. Guy Scott fired PF Secretary General Edgar Lungu MP and appointed Davies Mwila MP. Only for Mwila to decline the appointment publicly saying, "he cannot belittle the late head of State by not mourning him with dignity". Information reaching us is that Edgar Lungu has also in fact refused to step down.

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