By Jerry Munthali in Ankara, Turkey
The Zambian Mission in Turkey has described the Turkey-Africa Economic Forum as successful because it provided a platform for the country to showcase investment opportunities in key sectors of the economy.
During the Business to Business (B2B) meetings anchored on the Turkey-Africa Economic Forum in Turkey’s agriculture and industrial hub of Konya, 30 Turkish investors and business people made inquiries about investment prospects in Zambia.
Deputy Head of Mission at the Embassy of the Republic of Zambia in Turkey, Bwalya Nondo said the Turkey-Africa Economic Forum accorded Zambia an opportunity to go into specifics of pointing out investment opportunities in priority sectors of agriculture, energy, construction and tourism, which are key to economic growth and job creation.
“We have guided them accordingly in terms of investment requisites, what they need to know and what they need to do. We are proposing that going forward, they undertake explorative visits to Zambia so that they can look at the investment landscape and have first-hand appreciation of what the investment climate is like in Zambia and from there they can make a decision,” Mr Nondo said.
He was confident that out of this engagement and interaction, there would be an inflow of potential Turkish investors going to Zambia because of the interest that has been generated.
Mr Nondo said the Zambian Mission in Ankara would make the necessary follow ups and engage the Turkish investors so that they could be availed with more details regarding investment conditions and incentives.
“We will engage them further prior to the time that they will be leaving for Zambia sometime next month,” Mr Nondo said
And Multinational Business Zambia chief executive officer, Kafwimbi Malindima, who attended the Turkey-Africa Economic Forum, said the benefits he derived from the interactions with Turkish companies were massive.
Mr Malindima said his participation in the Turkey-Africa Economic Forum had opened up doors for Zambian Small and medium-sized Enterprises (SMEs) to explore possible partnerships with Turkish companies and benefit from technology transfer.
“I am so grateful and I have learnt a lot on how the Turkish economy has developed over the years and how Zambian SMEs can benefit. The focus here is to go back home and share the knowledge that I have acquired and explore how we can create synergies with Turkish companies,” Mr Malindima said.
He said SMEs should be supported to grow because they form the backbone of the economy and have potential to contribute to the Gross Domestic Product (GDP) of the country.
The Turkey-Economic Forum was organized by the 55,000-member Independent Industrialists and Businessmen Association (MUSIAD).
The Turkey-Africa Economic Forum attracted delegates from 33 African countries and 230 Turkish companies.
The Zambia Mission in Turkey covers the Hashemite Kingdom of Jordan, Republic of Azerbaijan, Republic of Georgia and Republic of Macedonia as countries of extra accreditation.
The writer is the First Secretary at the Zambian Embassy in Turkey.