Zambia and the African Development Bank have today signed financing agreements totaling USD125 Million.
Finance Minister Alexander Chikwanda, MP, signed on behalf of Zambia while Mr. Damoni Kitabire, Country Manager, signed on behalf of the ADB.
The loan agreements will enable the African Development Bank to provide a total amount of One Hundred and Twenty Five Million United States Dollars [USD 125 million] or approximately One Billion Four Hundred Million Kwacha [K1.400 billion], for the following projects:
US$ 50 MILLION FOR THE LUSAKA SANITATION PROGRAM – CLIMATE RESILIENT SUSTAINABLE INFRASTRUCTURE
The objective of the project is to improve access to public sanitation in Lusaka City in an environmentally and socially acceptable manner. This is in response to the increasing demand from domestic consumers, economic and social sectors of the City, targeted at ensuring the effective management and operation of the sewerage facilities on a commercial basis.
US$ 45 MILLION CASHEW INFRASTRUCTURE DEVELOPMENT PROJECT (CIDP)
This loan is for the Cashew Infrastructure Development Project. The project aims at reviving the cashew subsector and is one of government’s priority projects. The development goal is to contribute to country’s economic growth and food security. The objective is to contribute to poverty reduction, improved household incomes through improved cashew production and processing. The project will be implemented by the Ministry of Agriculture over a period of 5 years in Mongu, Limulunga, Senanga, Kalabo, Nalolo, Sikongo, Shangombo, Sioma, Lukulu, and Mitete Districts of the Western Province. Sixty thousand [60,000] smallholder farmers, 50% of whom shall be women and Seven Thousand [7,000] youths will benefit. The project will also create six thousand 6,000 full time jobs along cashew value chain.
US$ 30 MILLION FOR THE SKILLS DEVELOPMENT AND ENTREPRENEURSHIP PROJECT – SUPPORTING WOMEN AND YOUTH
This loan agreement is for the Zambia Skills Development and Entrepreneurship Project –targeted at supporting women and youth. A total of 17, 000 youth and women cooperatives, 1000 Micro Small and Medium Entrepreneurs and 200 Business Development Service providers will be reached.
The project aims to promote job creation, gender equality and poverty reduction. The project also seeks to improve the livelihood opportunities of Zambia’s poor, especially in rural areas and will benefit particularly, women and youth through enabling infrastructure and entrepreneurship for micro, small and medium size enterprises business development.
The project supports the development of industrial cluster infrastructure and enabling environment to enhance micro, small, medium enterprises competiveness and, the cassava value chain sub-sector targeting mostly the rural poor. The project commences with immediate effect and will run for over 60 months.
STATEMENT BY MR. DAMONI KITABIRE – COUNTRY MANAGER – ADB COUNTRY OFFICE
Honourable Minister, this momentous occasion demonstrates yet again, the African Development Bank’s resolute commitment to support Zambia’s economic diversification agenda towards meeting the Vision 2030 at national level, Agenda 2063 at continental level and United Nations Sustainable Development Goals at global level.
As you are aware, Governor, the new President of the African Development Bank has elaborated the “High Fives”, an enhanced pathway towards the implementation of the Bank’s Ten Year Strategy to accelerate Africa’s development.
The High Fives are in five main components: (i) Light up Africa; (ii) Feed Africa (iii) Integrate Africa (iv) Industrialize Africa, and (v) Improve the quality of life for the people of Africa.
At country level, therefore, the signing of the three financing agreements today marks the beginning of the roll out of this “High Fives” roadmap to build on our historical cooperation that dates back from 1965, and has witnessed the financing of over 130 projects worth almost USD2.0 billion.
The Cashew Infrastructure Development Project is worth USD 44.2milion and is aimed at reviving the cashew based economy of Western Province and will contribute to agricultural diversification, poverty reduction, improved household incomes through improved cashew production and processing. It will benefit 60,000 smallholder farmers, 50% of whom shall be women and 7,000 youths. It will create 6,000 full time jobs along cashew value chain.
The Skills Development and Entrepreneurship Project is worth USD29 million and will support Women and Youth by creating jobs and improving the livelihoods through provision of enabling infrastructure, entrepreneurship training and business development for Micro Small and Medium Entrepreneurs. The project will develop industrial cluster infrastructure aimed at commercializing the cassava value chain for the rural poor, youth and women across 7 provinces. A total of 17, 000 youth and women cooperatives, 1000 Micro Small and Medium Entrepreneurs and 200 Business Development Service providers are expected to be reached.
The Lusaka Sanitation Program is worth USD 50 million and will contribute to the High Five theme of “improving the quality of life for the people of Africa” particularly Zambia. The project will help replace the aged sewerage infrastructure in Lusaka city, and thereby improve access to public sanitation services. Aproximately 2 million people will benefit from the project, through reduction in sanitation related diseases.
Honourable Minister, I earnestly appeal to your Ministry to accelerate the process of meeting conditions precedent to effectiveness and first disbursement for the 3 projects, so that project implementation can begin in earnest.
I am also glad that today, you are signing the Letter of Agreement to allow the Government of the Republic of Zambia to use the National Procurement Procedures for some contracts for works and goods financed by the Bank. It is expected that the use of National Procurement Procedures will help accelerate project implementation.
Honourable Minister, Distinguished Guests, Ladies and Gentlemen, the African Development Bank reiterates its commitment to support Zambia’s development Agenda.
I THANK YOU.