Chambishi Economic Zone draws new business

Zambia-China Economic and Trade Cooperation Zone (ZCCZ) and four companies from China’s Shangdong Province have signed investment agreements for $100 million to allow the firms start operating in Chambishi Multi-Facility Economic Zone (MFEZ) on the Copperbelt.

Ministry of Commerce, Trade and Industry Director for Industry, Mr Siazongo Siakalenge signed on behalf of the Zambian government, Mr Tao Xinghu for ZCCZ while Mr Song Yuanfang, chairman of Liaocheng Municipal People’s Congress signed for the four companies. The four companies are the Shangdong Guanfeng Seeds Technology Company Limited, Guangfeng Group of China, Xiang Guang Group and Yanggu Xiangguang Copper Company Limited.
Speaking at the signing ceremony recently, Mr Siakalenge said the investment by the four firms into the Chambishi MFEZ was the starting point for over 50 companies that were expected to operate in the zone. About 20 companies were expected to start operating in the MFEZ by the end of the year.
Mr Song said that Chinese firms will continue investing in Zambia as part of cementing relations between the two countries and Africa as a whole.
Meanwhile, Finance and National Planning Minister Dr Situmbeko Musokotwane has urged both local and foreign companies to consider investing in the special tax free MFEZ in Chambishi to enhance value addition to raw materials.
Zambia was looking for investors to create industries that would process raw materials such as copper and make some of the components used in mining which are currently imported.
China Non ferrous Metal Mining (CNMC), which has promoted development of the zone, plans to invest $300 million between 2010 and 2011 in projects such as the Chambishi copper smelter, according to its president Mr Luo Tao.
Zambia and China are developing another tax free zone in the capital Lusaka that would host companies specialising in light engineering and international conferencing.
“The Master Plan has been done and we were told by the promoters of the project, China Nonferrous Metal Mining, that construction is going to start after the rainy season," Dr Musokotwane elaborated.

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