President Edgar Lungu has launched construction of the first ever Multi Facility Economic Zone (MFEZ) in Central Province with the aim of fostering industrialisation and value addition to locally produced goods.

The US$300 million project being constructed by China Jiangxi United Industrial Investment is located opposite Farm Store along the Great North Road in Chibombo and it is envisaged to accommodate various industries including Motor Vehicle and Generator Assembling Plants.

The investment park has become the first major investment since the Central Province Investment Forum and Expo which attracted more than 2,000 delegates, was held in Kabwe.

President Lungu noted that the setting up of an industrial park in Chibombo district by the government of China was an indication of the importance that the People’s Republic of China attaches to its bilateral cooperation with Zambia.

“Let me take this opportunity to express my sincere gratitude to the Provincial administration of Guangxi Province for participating in the business forum in Guangxi on the sidelines of FOCAC. I am particularly happy that this investment is coming immediately after the Central Province Investment Forum and Expo, where the province showcased its diverse investment opportunities. In this regard, I want to applaud the Ministry of Commerce and the Central Province Provincial Administration for working tirelessly to ensure that the Expo bears fruit, as we are witnessing today. These developments indeed tell a deep rooted relationship which exists between Zambia and China,” President Lungu said.

“Our friendship with China dates back to the pre independence era and Zambia was in fact the first Southern African country to forge diplomatic ties with China. We should therefore endeavour to cherish the bilateral and mutual relationships between the two countries. I wish to reiterate my government’s commitment to creating a conducive environment for business and growth through continuous implementation of business reforms. We shall continue to make efforts aimed at reducing the cost of doing business… our efforts are not mere rhetoric but this is evidenced by our huge investment into the modernisation and upgrading of our infrastructure such as roads, airports, rails and boarder points among others, thereby turning our country into a construction site.”

The President pledged government’s continued support to those wishing to invest in the Multi Facility Economic Zones.

“The government will continue to encourage the development of Multi Facility Zones, industrial parks and farm blocks to foster industrialisation and value addition. It is for this reason that the Ministry of Commerce, Trade and Industry has developed the national industrial policy, national monitoring strategy and the national investment promotion strategy, all aimed at creating a platform for continued development and growth,” said President Lungu.