1 Billion dollar investment pie for the select few!
….. Zambia stands to benefit
Berlin, August 24, 2018
Zambia is among a few African countries that stand to benefit from a German private investment fund worth 1 billion dollars. The sectors earmarked for investment include energy, tourism, mining and housing among others. Carl Bruhn, CEO of Amatheon, a German firm with agricultural investments in Zambia worth over 80 million dollars, told Zambia’s ambassador to Germany Anthony Mukwita that between 6 to 8 African countries have been identified to be beneficiaries of the investment fund.
“If Zambia is to benefit from this investment fund, there is need to work on some administrative bottlenecks that could slow down investment flows”, Mr. Bruhn advised.
“We have been in Zambia since 2012 and wish to expand our operations there”, he added, “but to do this, Zambia must be aware that it faces competition from other countries thereby requiring that you breakdown any administrative barriers that could lead to others overtaking you”.
Ambassador Mukwita expressed gratitude at Mr. Bruhn’s advice and undertook to use his office to facilitate the smooth flow of investment from Germany to Zambia.
“I am glad that you have candidly shared your experiences in Zambia and your desire to expand your investment”, the Zambian envoy said. On his part, Ambassador Mukwita undertook to help Amatheon and any German investor to access any facilities they may require to make their investment experience a worthwhile undertaking.
The Zambian envoy noted that the thematic areas targeted by the suggested one billion dollar investment fund are areas that the Zambian government has equally identified as growth points for the economy.
“We want to boost numbers of German tourists into Zambia; we want to improve the energy sector and we want to boost agriculture”, Ambassador Mukwita noted. The Africa Fund is the initiative of Mr. Bruhn but contributions have been drawn from various German investors.
Amatheon, which employs 800 workers, has an agricultural investment in the Mumbwa area growing maize, potatoes, soya beans and rearing cattle. It operates an out-grower scheme that benefits 15,000 farmers. Under its company, Real Meat Africa, cattle is slaughtered, processed and sold on both wholesale as well as retail basis in the company-owned stores.
As part of its Corporate Social Responsibility, CSR, programs, Amatheon is working on the establishment of a health post in Mumbwa that should have basic facilities from where medical cases may be referred to either a health center or district hospital as the case may require.
Zambia has a development agreement with the German government that has seen millions of dollars in development funds flowing into Zambia. President Edgar Lungu would like to add to this effort investment from the private sector. To make this possible, the Zambian leader has launched economic diplomacy so that the country’s foreign missions emphasize more investment than anything else.