• The likelihood of the State Owned Enterprises embracing Public Private Partnership models cannot be far-fetched.
• It’s a necessary measure and Government is applauded for this support mechanism to SOEs.
• IDC must closely embrace OECD Guidelines for multinational enterprises as they undertake the SOEs reform processes.
Zambia Chamber of Commerce and Industry (ZACCI) has called on local investors, with interest in the infrastructure business space to capitalize on the proposed reforms targeted for the State Owned Enterprises (SOEs).
Chamber President Dr. Jerome Kawesha noted that during the presentation of the proposed 2023 national budget on Friday, Finance Minister touched on State Owned Enterprises Policy that will enhance governance, which is a necessary measure.
Dr. Kawesha stated that the likelihood of the State Owned Enterprises embracing Public Private Partnership (PPP) models cannot be far-fetched.
“It’s a necessary measure and Government is applauded for this support mechanism to the State Owned Enterprises,” Dr. Kawesha stated.
He further urged Industrial Development Corporation (IDC) to closely embrace Organisation for Economic Co-operation and Development (OECD) guidelines for multinational enterprises, as they undertake the State Owned Enterprises reform processes and policy enhancement.
Dr. Kawesha is of the view that OECD Guidelines must be at the core and be followed by Zambia’s State Owned Enterprises.
“In principle they are recommendations from governments and in some cases key stakeholders to multinational enterprises on responsible business conduct that in many cases with attract capital, commercial and technical investment. Followed, they can play a major role in job creation threefold through secondary operatives.”
“The OECD guidelines set standards for responsible business conduct across a range of issues such as human rights, labour rights, and the environment. The reformed SOEs must build there capacities to undertake Bankable Feasibility Studies and Reports (BFSR) and within agreed timeframes look at expansions, public listings and tangible contributions to Zambia’s enterprise initiatives. The SOEs must also attract affordable financing,” he explained.
And Dr. Kawesha said ZACCI will closely follow the efforts Government plans to deploy with regards to Value Added Tax (VAT) concessions and other incentives.
“Notable is the Milk sub-sector and the Information Communication and Technology (ICT) sub-sector. We call upon private sector players in this market space to make their mark by increasing trade volumes as well as network capacities and ancillary services respectively,” Dr. Kawesha said.
During the presentation of the proposed 2023 national budget, Finance Minister Dr. Situmbeko Musokotwane disclosed that Government is developing a state owned enterprise policy to strengthen their governance and improve performance, adding that the policy will also provide a framework for conducting periodic assessment of state-owned enterprises to ensure appropriate interventions.