When we say more money in your pockets, we don’t mean we shall deliver it to your homes, says President Edgar Lungu.
And President Lungu says people will only feel the impact of lower taxes if they all start paying tax.
Commissioning the operation of Marcopolo Tiles Company in Chilanga district yesterday, President Lungu said people should work hard to have more money in there pockets.
“Let me point out that most of you keep complaining about access to finding support. What we need to do is to call on the ministry of commerce and industry and find out what help they are rendering to our people in our quest to have every Zambian involved in production, processing and marketing. You can not stand there or sit there and just complain. When we said more money in your pockets, we did not mean that we will bring money to your home, please. You have the responsibility to work hard, strive and search forward. Only then you will know the benefit. But if you sit there hoping PF will bring more money because we said more money in the pockets, that’s not what we meant please,” he said.
“One of the policies is to support manufacturing and production through initiatives which encourages secondary processing of raw materials. That’s what we are talking about here. More money in your pocket does not mean you sit at home and dream, you have to work for it. We will give you opportunities and create the environment for you if you need the money. That’s what we do and that’s what we are doing.”
President Lungu said people would only feel the impact of lower taxes if they all started paying tax.
“I therefore take this opportunity to urge other private sector companies to emulate Marcopolo Company Limited in taking advantage of the prevailing conducive business environments to venture into value addition. This is the only way we are going to create wealth, employment and increase foreign exchange avenues. Let me repeat. No one will come and put food on your table please. When we say lower taxes we say we will broaden the production base so that people begin paying lower taxes. If only one company is paying tax certainly the tax burden will be higher. Lower taxes meant that because of the jobs that we will create, people will share the tax burden therefore they will pay less tax,” he said.
President Lungu said Michael Sata’s vision of lower taxes will only be achieved if everyone became productive.
“Many people condemn government that Mr Sata said lower taxes, yes lower taxes! But if it’s only two people out of 10 paying tax then they will pay more tax but if all us are producing and we are paying tax then the tax will be less. Mr Sata spoke in parables, its up to us his disciples to interpret what he meant. That man had a vision and we knew what he meant. He said lower taxes, more money in you pockets, more food on the table. Yes he meant like that and we can do that but we can only do that if we all get into productivity, if we all start paying tax, if all of us produce, then we can have lower taxes, we can have more money,” said President Lungu.
“That is the vision we are working on. So there were so many of us who were his disciples, I’m one of them just like when Jesus Christ had his time on earth he passed on, he chose Peter on whom he said I would build my church. There were others but he said on Peter I will build my church. So I believe that Mr Sata said on Edgar I will build my church. I wish to retaliate that government will continue to promote the private sector as an engine of our economy. As we push for faster industrialisation, I’m confident that through value addition, wealth not poverty will be created. We cannot share poverty we can only share wealth.”