For­eign dom­i­nance of con­tracts wor­ry­ing

Daily Nation Newspaper - - HOME NEWS -

By BEN­NIE MUNDANDO WE are con­cerned that de­spite our ef­forts to em­power lo­cal con­trac­tors, 80 per­cent of our con­tracts are still be­ing done by for­eign-owned com­pa­nies which only ac­count for 5 per­cent of the com­pa­nies op­er­at­ing in Zam­bia, Gov­ern­ment has said.

Hous­ing and In­fra­struc­ture De­vel­op­ment Per­ma­nent Sec­re­tary, Charles Mushota said the trend needed con­certed ef­forts to be rec­ti­fied.

Mr Mushota was speak­ing when he opened the 2017 con­struc­tion in­dus­try stake­holder con­sul­ta­tive meet­ing in Lusaka over the week­end.

Mr. Mushota said while there was noth­ing wrong with for­eign com­pa­nies par­tic­i­pat­ing in Zam­bia as it pro­vided an av­enue for good stim­u­la­tion of the com­peti- tion, cap­i­tal, skills de­vel­op­ment and tech­nol­ogy trans­fer, the con­tract up­take rate by the lo­cals had be­come a source of con­cern.

“Whilst the pres­ence of the for­eign com­pa­nies is good for the stim­u­la­tion of the com­pet­i­tive­ness, cap­i­tal, skills de­vel­op­ment and tech­nol­ogy trans­fer, Gov­ern­ment has noted that more than 80 per­cent of the con­tracts con­tinue to be ex­e­cuted by 5 per­cent for­eign-owned com­pa­nies.

“We need to put prac­ti­cal mea­sures to en­able us move to a level where our lo­cal con­tac­tors can take up a rea­son­able por­tion of the con­tracts reg­u­larly or in equal part­ner­ship with for­eign con­trac­tors,” Mr. Mushota said.

He how­ever noted that due to im­mense op­por­tu­ni­ties in the sec­tor, there has been an in­crease in in­vest­ment es­pe­cially among small-scale en­ter­prises.

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