We’re for fair trade practices - Lungu
GOVERNMENT remains committed to addressing unfair competition and illicit trade that is deterring the country’s dream of industrialisation, President Edgar Lungu has said.
President Lungu noted that the local manufacturing industry was facing unfair competition due to imported products, particularly those that were smuggled into the country.
The President was speaking yesterday during the “meet the President seminar,” organised by the Zambia Association of Manufacturers (ZAM).
“As Government, we are also concerned about the illicit trade as it does not only cause a leakage of the much needed revenue, but it is a deterrent to the advancement of industrialisation,” President Lungu said.
He said Government was doing everything possible to promote the consumption of locally manufactured products, as it was crucial to advancing Zambia’s industrialisation agenda and national development.
“It is clear that enhancing local content or the purchase and use of local products in various value chains is crucial for Zambia’s industrialisation agenda.”
He indicated that it was therefore important that all Government departments make concerted efforts to procure locally manufactured products and give such products preference in all government contracts.
President Lungu said proposed extension and expansion of the five percent surtax on imported products that were locally manufactured as a measure to promote local sourcing and the growth of local industries.
President Lungu said his administration was also engaging respective governments in the region to address various bottlenecks local manufacturers face when exporting so as to create a level playing field for them.
“Our ultimate goal as government is to attain a proudly industrialised Zambia, a regional hub for unequalled manufacture of high quality Zambian products to compete favourably on the regional and international market,” President Lungu said.
ZAM president Rosetta Chabala said the organisation wants preferential treatment for its members.
Ms Chabala assured that ZAM was equal to the task and capable of contributing to the growth of the economy.