28.05.2019 – European Union External Investment Plan Outreach Event

May,2019

European External Investment Plan officially launched in Zambia

On 28 May 2019, the European Union, in collaboration with the European Union Business Club (EUZBC), successfully launched the European External Investment Plan (EIP) for Zambia as part of the ongoing outreach missions. The event was officially opened by the Minister of Commerce, Trade and Industry, Hon. Christopher Yaluma. The EIP is an EU initiative launched in 2017 to attract investment, in particular from businesses and private investors in partner countries in Africa and near the EU (‘EU Neighbourhood’). Under the EIP umbrella, the EU has been supporting the establishment of financing instruments and guarantee products alongside technical assistance and policy dialogue to improve the business environment and investment climate.

The 150 participants from the European and Zambian private sector, Government ministries and agencies, Cooperating partners and EU member states got first-hand information on the EIP itself, on the investment climate and on the 14 guarantee products applicable to Zambia under the EIP. The presenters included representatives from the International Finance Institutions (IFIs), namely the EIB, AFD (Proparco and GreenCo), KfW, AfDB and IFC, colleagues from the Directorate General for Development Cooperation, and representatives of the private sector and Government of Zambia. A separate session on ElectriFI was organised including one-to-one meetings with energy advisors which received an overwhelming response from companies.

In his speech, the EU Ambassador to Zambia, His Excellency Alessandro Mariani, said that the EIP is one of the most important tools available to implement the new Africa-Europe Alliance for Sustainable Investment and Jobs in order to deepen the economic and trade relations between Zambia and the EU and goes beyond a donor-recipient approach. He said that by taking participating in the EIP, this will allow companies to invest and expand their businesses in sectors and markets considered more risky, and offer job opportunities for the people where investments are made, including the people of Zambia and in particular for the Zambian youth.

Prior to the launch, specific EIP information sessions were held for the EU Members States present in Zambia and for the Government.

Overall, the main takeaway from the event was that Zambia has the capacity and willingness to fully take advantage of the EIP. The EIP was recognised as a good instrument to engage with the Government and private sector through effective structured public-private dialogues. On the other hand, the IFIs present in Zambia have shown interest in joining forces with the EU in the implementation of the different guarantees once they are approved and ready to be rolled out in collaboration with the local finance institutions.

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