The Multi-Facility Economic Zone (MFEZ) is a Government programme. Introduced to Zambia in 2005 by the Japanese Government through Japan International Corporation Agency (JICA).
The aim is to create a platform for Zambia to achieve economic development by attracting significant domestic and foreign direct investment (FDI) through a strengthened policy and legislative environment. The initiative emphasises on political will and integrity, private sector dynamism and integrity and civil service efficiency and integrity as key forces that enable the economy to attain accelerated economic development.
The implementation of MFEZs in Zambia is designed to make Zambia competitive through increased activity in the trade and manufacturing sectors, which have numerous positive spillover effects in other sectors such as utilities, transport, agriculture and services.
Development of Multi-Facility Economic Zones
The Ministry is committed to promoting Multi-Facility Economic Zones (MFEZ) which are designed to support the growth and development of the manufacturing activities in the country.
The status of the MFEZs during the period under review is as highlighted in the subsections that follow:
The number of investors registered to operate in the Chambishi MFEZ had reached 41 companies with accumulated investment commitments of US$ 1.6 Billion and a total of 8,146 number of employees. Other major developmental achievements included: the construction of telecommunication infrastructure to support internet connectivity; Access to water through boreholes supported by water reticulation systems that also supports sewerage and rainwater drainage systems; and development of water and sanitation infrastructure, road networks and power supply.
Lusaka East MFEZ
The Lusaka East MFEZ had 14 enterprises registered to operate in the Zone. Other additional activities undertaken in the MFEZ included the following: tarring of 10km of internal road connectivity; installation of a 10Kv power transformer, even though it is inadequate to cater for the Zone; installation of boreholes and erection of 300 ton steel towers for water supply; and erection of electric fence all around the Zone.
Lusaka South MFEZ
Numerous enterprises expressed interest to set up in the Lusaka South MFEZ out of which fourteen (14) investors signed their lease agreement out of whom 3 are near completion of constructing their respective industrial premises namely: Zambia Breweries Plc (malting plant), NRB Pharma (pharmaceutical manufacturing plant) and Zambian Fertiliser (fertiliser blending plant).
Activities that were undertaken to develop the MFEZ included the construction of the LS-MFEZ offices have been completed; procurement of a standby 350 KVA generator to supply electricity; sinking of two boreholes in Phase 1 fitted with chlorination facilities and installation of water reservoirs. The water distribution network has been completed; installation of a sewer network and a mechanical sewer treatment plant; and the construction of 20km of internal asphalt roads within LS-MFEZ.
Roma Industrial Park is a mixed-use development planned to focus on residential housing, commercial/retail and light industrial developments. Notable developments undertaken in the Park include the construction of 6km of internal asphalt tarred road.
All the 300 residential housing plots have been taken up with individual developers being at various stages of construction with majority houses being occupied. The residential housing part has been fully subscribed and the developers are currently putting up additional 100 houses to be maintained for rental purposes. The commercial and light industrial area has had a slow uptake with only Mount Meru putting up an office complex for its Headquarters and two South African Consortia acquiring commercial plots for the possible establishment a medical facility and Retail Park.
Sub-Sahara Gemstone Industrial Park
The objective of setting up this Industrial Park was to attract enterprises undertaking lapidary activities and support functions in gemstone processing which inevitably would make gemstone mining in Zambia a sustainable venture to bring wealth to the nation as a whole. However, no progress was made during the period under review.