LUSAKA, Apr. 15 - Government says there is need for speedy policy formulation, institutional and legal framework to encourage private and community participation in the development of tourism in the country.
Speaking in Lusaka yesterday during the finalising of the Tourism, Hospitality and the Zambia National Tourism Board Bills, Tourism Minister Patrick Kalifungwa said finalising the two bills would make the sector viable and contribute to sustainable growth.
"Thus the tourism policy aligns the tourism sector performance in a way that it would boost socio-economic growth and diversification of the Zambian economy," he said.
Mr Kalifungwa said the bills were not meant to constrain Government, private sector operations and community participation but strengthen the existing laws governing the sector.
He said the private sector was critical towards realising long-term vision for the development of tourism.
He said the sector, which had the potential to reduce poverty, bring in foreign exchange and create employment, should be supported by all stakeholders.
And officiating at the Environmental Council of Zambia (ECZ) meeting on Polychlorinated Biphenyls (PCBs), which are toxic wastes, Mr Kalifungwa called for concerted efforts to dispose of and phase out the usage of toxic chemicals.
The minister said although the importation of PCBs had been banned in the country, there were stockpiles of the PCBs in equipment which was still in use.
He commended ECZ for developing a database and starting on an awareness campaign on the dangers of the toxic chemicals.
He hailed the Zambia Consolidated Copper Mines-Industrial Holdings and the Copperbelt Energy Corporation for having disposed of the chemicals.