(Xinhua) -- The
South African government on Wednesday assured Zambia on the
safety of truck travelers traveling to that country following
Six trucks from Zambia were burnt in
two separate incidents in South Africa’s Kwazulu-Natal and
Limpopo provinces in recent weeks, resulting in Zambia
authorities raising concerns on the safety of its citizens in
South Africa and asking the authorities to do more to quell the
Zambia’s High Commissioner to South Africa Emmanuel Mwamba
said South African authorities have assured the truck drivers
and transporters traveling to that country of safety.
The Zambian envoy said the assurance was made during a
meeting he held with South Africa’s Department of International
Relations and Cooperation, according to a statement released by
the Zambian embassy.
Safety measures have been put in place at highways, borders
while toll plazas have been secured and have now been given a
higher security presence, he added.
Mwamba further said roads and highways international truck
drivers use will also benefit from increased police patrols,
adding that suspects who burnt Zambian trucks in both incidents
have been arrested and arraigned before courts.
Zambian airline to launch
Harare flights in July
HARARE Zimbabwe (Xinhua) --
Zambia’s airline Proflight announced Wednesday that it will
launch a new service between Zimbabwe’s capital Harare and
Zambia’s capital Lusaka in July, its third international route
as it expands its regional footprint.
In a statement to Xinhua, the airline said the Lusaka-Harare
route, staring on July 9, will not only boost trade and tourism
between the neighboring countries but also throughout the entire
southern and central African region.
"Proflight is very happy and proud to launch the
Lusaka-Harare route to provide easier access to travelers across
southern African states," the airline’s director of government
and industry affairs Philip Lemba said.
He said the new route will increase economic trade and
development for various industries for both Zambia and Zimbabwe.
Lemba said Proflight was not worried that the Harare-Lusaka
route was well served by international airlines and would
commence with an early morning service four times per week.
The early morning service time will be convenient for the
business travelers, he said.
Proflight currently flies from its base in Lusaka through
regional routes to Lilongwe in Malawi and Durban in South
Zimbabwe has in recent years witnessed an interest from
various airlines that are keen to fly into the country,
especially after the completion of the upgrading of Victoria
Falls International Airport by a Chinese firm in 2016.
Last week, the Zimbabwe government opened talks with one of
the largest airlines in Asia, Qatar Airways, to open a new route
between Harare and Doha, Qatar’s capital.
The discussion came up at a meeting between Zimbabwean
President Emmerson Mnangagwa and Qatari leader Sheikh Tamim Bin
Hamad bin Khalifa Al Thani during the Zimbabwean leader’s
official visit to the Asian country.
Zambia and Saudi Arabia
agree to cement co-operation
LUSAKA Zambia (Xinhua) --
Zambia and Saudi Arabia on Wednesday
signed a memorandum of understanding on diplomatic and political
The memorandum of understanding will allow the two countries
to have practical cooperation and close coordination on various
bilateral and internal issues as well as provide a mechanism to
review outstanding agreements between the two countries.
Zambia’s Minister of Foreign Affairs Joseph Malanji, who is
in Saudi Arabia signed on behalf of the southern African nation
while his counterpart Adel bin Ahmed Al-Jubeir signed on behalf
of his country, according to a statement released by the foreign
The two ministers, who held bilateral talks, committed
themselves to do everything possible in advancing bilateral ties
in order to build strong economic partnerships and strategic
The Zambian minister said the signing of the memorandum of
understanding is a demonstration of the strong bonds of
friendship and genuine strategic partnership between the two
The memorandum of understanding also demonstrates the
deliberate efforts made by the two countries to further
consolidate their bilateral relations as well as enhance the
Africa-Saudi Arabia relations, he added.
Zambia central bank
maintains key lending rate
LUSAKA Zambia(Xinhua) --
Zambia’s central bank on Wednesday maintained its
key lending rate at 9.75 percent due to a fragile economic
growth evidenced by subdued credit growth to private
The Bank of Zambia (BoZ) said it decided to maintain the
monetary policy rate as it felt it was appropriate to do so and
that this was in line with the projections indicating that
inflation will remain within the 6-8 percent target range.
The central bank has also decided to maintain the statutory
reserve ratio at 5 percent.
Denny Kalyalya, Governor of the Central Bank, said the bank
also considered the need to strengthen the resilience of the
financial sector to domestic and external shocks, adding that
although real sectors indicate a steady pickup in annual
economic growth, growth remains fragile.
He said the central bank decided to maintain the two
instruments to help induce the lowering of high interest rates
and boost economic growth.
According to the central bank chief, projections indicate
that inflation will rise above 7 percent during the second and
third quarters of 2018 but decline thereafter towards the lower
bound of the 6-8 percent target range.
He attributed the fragility in the economy to weak credit
growth to the private sector, mainly driven by huge than
programmed budget deficits, high lending rates and rising
"The Bank will continue to closely monitor domestic and
external sector developments and stand ready to implement
appropriate measures to maintain price and financial system
stability, and to support economic growth," he told reporters
during a press briefing.
Meanwhile, the central bank chief revealed that the country’s
preliminary fiscal deficit of 6.1 percent of Gross Domestic
Product (GDP) was likely to be revised upwards in the wake of a
recent debt sustainability analysis.
He said the 2018 budget estimates are also expected to
undergo some revisions, adding that higher than programmed
fiscal outcomes in 2018 would heighten risks to macroeconomic
Zambia sees demand for
government securities rising in first quarter
LUSAKA Zambia (Xinhua) --
Zambia saw demand for government
securities rising in the first quarter of 2018, figures released
by its central bank on Wednesday showed.
According to the figures, subscription rates for treasury
bills and government bonds averaged 92.9 percent and 144.2
percent, up from 81.9 percent and 108.8 percent, respectively.
The central bank attributed the increase to mainly higher
participation of non-resident investors on account of attractive
yield rates and relative stability in the exchange rate.
"Resident investors continued to be the major holders of
government securities. However, non-resident investors’ holdings
of government securities continued to increase, albeit at a
slower pace," Denny Kalyalya, the governor of the central bank
told reporters during a press briefing.
He however said longer tenors remained the non-resident
investors’ preferred securities due to their relatively higher
real yield rates, adding that this also signals their confidence
in Zambia’s growth prospects.