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 2009-09-01 06:26 am Back to NEWS
Finance your own development – Norwegian Economist advises govt.

An Economist at the Norwegian Embassy has urged the Zambian Government to finance its own development in order to fully benefit from the revenues collected from the extractive industries.

Norwegian Embassy Country Economist, Olav Lundstol says Zambia will not benefit fully from the revenues collected from the extracted industries if it continues to depend on donor support.

Lundstol noted that foreign support would always attach conditions when investing in the country and hence the government would only take a small percentage from the revenues realized from the extractive industries.

“It is important for government to utilize its own resources within the country because this I linked to good governance,” he said.

He also said aid is important but that having national ownership of resources would mean that revenues collected remain in the country without conditions.

Mr. Lundstol further stated that Zambia still requires foreign aid but that it should encourage people to generate revenue from the extractive industries as this would bring development and allow the country to move towards the vision 2030.

And Lundstol says after 40 years of mining copper, Zambia would have been economically stable but that due foreign dependency it realizes lower percentages of copper earnings from the mines.

He explained that the country would have been the hub of copper mining in the region and export levels would have been higher adding that the country is rich in natural resources.

He said copper earnings would have increased to about $30 billion in the past years but that the government has had very low take.

Lundstol further urged the government to have a specialized mining tax administration and understand, scrutinize and negotiate with the companies under extractive industries.

He charged that the government does not carry out audits in the mining sector on how revenue is being generated and hence it is not aware of the export levels within the extractive industries.

Meanwhile the Norwegian government has disbursed about $60 million throughout Zambia after recognizing the gap between the government and the extractive industries.

The programme is aimed at promoting new development through encouraging the communities’ involvement in generating revenues from the resources within their areas.

ZANIS

 
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