Zambezi Times Online

Zamcargo Scouts For Equity Partner

DAR ES SALAAM May 13 - The defunct Zambia Cargo (Zamcargo), a Zambian Freight Company based in Tanzania is looking for an equity partner to invest in the company so as to reactivate its operations.

Zambia's High Commissioner to Tanzania Joshua Simuyandi disclosed yesterday that the company needed huge recapitalisation to resume operations.

Mr Simuyandi said that Zamcargo which was currently being run by the Zambia Consolidated Copper Mines Investment Holdings (ZCCM-IH) infrastructure was completely run down.

He stressed that an equity partner should urgently be sought because of the significance the company had for Zambia's export of copper and the import of other products.

"The equipment at the company is broken down, the tractors, folk lifters and cranes are all run down," Mr Simuyandi said.

He said Zamcargo had the potential to off-load 15,000 tonnes of cargo as compared to the current 5,000 tonnes per day if the equipment was refurbished.

Mr Simuyandi however disclosed that ZCCM-IH had requested for bids which closed today for an equity partner to invest in the company.

The response had been overwhelming from Tanzanian companies that had shown interest to partner with ZCCM-IH.

Some big companies bidding included Maersek, a Tanzanian company which runs some companies in South Africa and Zambia.

And Zambia has welcomed the announcement by the European union (EU) to drop subsidies on farm exports.

Agriculture and Cooperatives Permanent Secretary Nicholas Kwendakwema said that the move was encouraging, as it would enable developing countries to compete favourably with developed countries.

Mr Kwendakwema who was representing Zambia on the technical committee at the on going Southern Africa Development Community (SADC) extra-ordinary summit on agriculture and food security, said currently it was difficult for developing countries to increase their market access because of cheaper products from developed countries.

He, however, said it would be important to assess as to what extent the drop in subsidies for farm imports would have on developing countries.

But EU's offer to drop the subsidies was on condition that rich countries such as Japan and the United States should follow suit.

The EU's reluctance to remove domestic and export subsidies on agricultural products had been viewed as the main stumbling block in the Doha development round table.

By Mercy Kabalata
Source: The Times of Zambia / allAfrica Global Media

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