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Finance Minister Musokotwane presents K167.3 bn 2023 National Budget

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Finance and National Planning Minister Dr. Situmbeko Musokotwane has unveiled a K167.3billion 2023 national budget anchored on economic growth and job creation, with a view to resolving the country’s debt crisis.

He allocated over K23 billion towards education sector – with K1. 5 billion targeted at renovation and construction adding that K358 million is to be used to recruit new teachers and upgrading those who have been acting over decades.

Below is the full Budget presentation:

2023 BUDGET ADDRESS BY HONOURABLE DR. SITUMBEKO MUSOKOTWANE, MP, MINISTER OF FINANCE AND NATIONAL PLANNING DELIVERED TO THE NATIONAL ASSEMBLY ON FRIDAY, 30TH SEPTEMBER, 2022

  1. Madam Speaker, I beg to move that the House do now resolve into Committee of Supply on the Estimates of Revenue and Expenditure for the period 1st January, 2023 to 31st December, 2023 presented to the National Assembly on Friday, 30th September, 2022. This is pursuant to Article 202 of the Constitution of Zambia (Amendment) Act No. 2 of 2016.
    2.Madam,Iamabearerofa message from the President of the Republic of Zambia, Mr. Hakainde Hichilema, recommending favourable consideration of the motion that I now lay on the Table.
  2. Madam Speaker, this is the second budget that the UPND Administration is presenting to this House. During the first year of being in office, the Administration has achieved significant socio- economic milestones. From being
    a country known for negative narratives such as crushing debt, worst performing currency in the world, rising inflation and stagnating growth. Our country has now regained respect, hope and admiration among other nations of the world for the strong efforts we are making to improve the economy and the livelihoods of our people.
  3. Madam Speaker, the UPND Government has laid a firm fundation for restoring debt sustainability. The stability of the exchange rate of our currency has convincingly been restored. On top of that, we have lowered inflation and, of course, there is now budget credibility. In simple terms, this means that Government is now spending in accordance with what Parliament approves with only minimal deviations.
  4. Madam, in the social sector, we are providing free education up to
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Grade 12 as we have always promised in our manifestos. We recruited an unprecedented number of teachers and frontline medical personnel. In addition, we increased the number of beneficiaries and the transfer value under the Social Cash Transfer Programme. Further, we cleared all outstanding pension arrears under the Public Service Pensions Fund which were due as at end-2021.

  1. Madam Speaker, we have delivered a bankable blue print for national development, the Eighth National Development Plan covering the period 2022 to 2026. Our commitment to economic, social and structural reforms contained in the Plan helped us secure an arrangement under the Extended Credit Facility from the IMF. The Programme with the IMF has enabled Government to make progress in resolving the debt crisis. It has also helped to unlock resources from bilateral and multilateral development partners to support our development agenda.
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  2. Madam, achieving so much over so short a time period has not happened by chance. Rather, it reflects the character of the UPND and its leadership. The UPND is methodical in its approach and it is a goal getting organisation. The progress that Government has made over the past year should therefore give hope to our citizens that the outstanding development challenges will be confronted with similar zeal and dedication.
  3. Madam Speaker, now that the economy has stabilised, this Government will turn its attention to addressing some of the critical outstanding developmental issues in our country. Among these are job creation, better incomes and infrastructure, especially roads. To achieve these, it is imperative that our economy grows bigger. Growth, not just in one year, but growth continuously every year, forever.
  4. Madam, during the official opening of the Second Session of the Thirteenth National Assembly, the President of the Republic of

Zambia, Mr. Hakainde Hichilema, emphasised the need to achieve socio-economic transformation by implementing measures to stimulate growth and ultimately improve the livelihoods of our people. It is in this regard, that the theme for the 2023 Budget is “Stimulating Economic Growth for improved livelihoods”.

  1. Madam Speaker, the 2023 Budget, therefore, provides the policy framework, resources and incentives to drive growth. The policies, strategies and measures contained in this Budget will go a long way towards unlocking local and foreign investment, promoting value addition and enhancing trade. This will stimulate economic growth, create jobs and improve livelihoods of our citizens.
  2. Madam, this Budget Address is in four parts. Part One highlights the global and domestic economic developments in 2022. Part Two presents the macroeconomic objectives, policies and strategies for the 2023 Fiscal Year. Part Three provides details on the estimates of
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    revenue and expenditure as well as the borrowing requirements for 2023. In Part Four, I will conclude my Address.
    Part I
    GLOBAL AND DOMESTIC ECONOMIC DEVELOPMENTS IN 2022
    Global Economic Developments
  3. Madam Speaker, in 2022, three notable events have dragged global growth down, namely, the Russia– Ukraine conflict, partial lockdowns in China related to COVID-19, and tighter financial conditions in advanced economies. These developments have led to the downward revision of global growth to 3.2 percent from 6.1 percent recorded in 2021. Consequently, prices of commodities such as copper weakened to an average of US $7,422 per metric tonne in September from US $9,550 per metric tonne in December 2021.
  4. Madam, the spill-over from the Russia–Ukraine conflict has led

to supply-side disruptions. One of the consequences has been an increase in prices of critical commodities such as petroleum products and fertiliser. The average crude oil price in the first half of 2022 rose to US $104.97 per barrel from US $69.00 per barrel recorded during the same period in 2021. This led to higher domestic petroleum pump prices, with diesel price peaking at K28.01 per litre in July. Similarly, the international price of fertiliser as measured by the Fertilisers Price Index, increased by 60.5 percent per metric tonne between August 2021 and August 2022.
Domestic Economic Developments
Economic Growth

  1. Madam Speaker, the economy has continued to grow albeit at a slower rate. By the end of this year, GDP is projected to grow by 3.0 percent compared to a recovery of 4.6 percent in 2021. The slowdown in growth is mainly attributed to lower output in agriculture due to
    late onset of rain, drought and flash floods in some parts of the country. Weak performance was also recorded in the construction sector.
    Budget Performance
  2. Madam Speaker, the overall budget performance in 2022 is set to be one of the most favourable in many years. Revenues have so far exceeded the target while expenditures have been contained within the target. A very important aspect of the budget so far is that there has been a high degree of credibility and certainty in release of funds. Deviations from the Budget are within the permissible 15 percent variation. Unlike in the past, Government has consistently been making monthly budgetary releases in accordance with the requirements of Ministries, Provinces and Agencies.
  3. Madam, a budget with less credibility diverts quite significantly from what Parliament approves. With the deviations, it is often the social sectors that lose out. Indeed, for many years, Zambian budgets
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have suffered from lack of credibility. As an example, year after year this House would approve and appropriate Constituency Development Fund. But for nine consecutive years, from 2011 to 2019, the money was not fully released.

  1. Madam Speaker, total revenues and grants for the period January to August 2022 amounted to K72.1 billion and were 3.5 percent above the budget target of K69.7 billion. Tax revenue stood at K54.4 billion, non-tax revenue at K13.5 billion, while grants were at K4.2 billion. The positive performance was mainly attributed to increased collections in corporate tax and Pay as You Earn. By the end of the year, total revenues and grants are expected to be K101.04 billion against the budget target of K100.7 billion.
  2. Madam, total expenditure for the period January to August 2022 amounted to K94.3 billion against the target of K110.2 billion. Of the total expenditure, K85.1 billion was financed from domestic resources
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    while K9.2 billion was foreign financed. Notable expenses were the 2022 Census of Population and Housing, Constituency Development Fund, and dismantling of arrears. Others were payment of retirement benefits and Government contributions under the Public Service Pensions Fund and the Local Authorities Superannuation Fund.
  3. Madam Speaker, the budget deficit for 2022 was projected at 6.7 percent of GDP. The year-end deficit is, however, now projected to be higher at 9.8 percent of GDP.
    Debt Position
  4. Madam Speaker, Zambia’s unsustainable debt has been in the news for a long time. At a personal level, the national indebtedness has hit most people through the depreciation of the Kwacha, rising inflation and poor funding for essential services.
  5. Madam, when I presented the budget last year, Government undertook to resolve this problem and not leave it hanging as it had

been since 2016. We are almost there. Given the extent of the debt problem, its resolution required engagement with the creditors to restructure the debt so that it becomes affordable to service.

  1. Madam Speaker, while the creditors recognised that it was necessary to restructure our debt, they were also alive to the risk that Zambia might not take steps to prevent the re-occurrence of another debt crisis. Debt restructuring cannot be useful if shortly afterwards, Zambia once again got into yet another unsustainable debt situation.
  2. This is where the IMF comes in, Madam Speaker. Zambia is a member of the IMF. We partly own it. And it is part of the IMF’s mandate to provide assurance to creditors that an indebted country has put in place measures to better manage its economy. To undertake this task, the IMF itself needed to be convinced that the indebted country has got its act together. Through the policy pronouncements contained in the
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    8th National Development Plan and its implementation, the IMF and other creditors have been convinced that Zambia is worthy supporting. They are now supporting us.
  3. With the IMF supported programme in place, Zambia is now engaging the creditors to conclude debt restructuring which will then result in debt reducing to affordable levels.
  4. In the meantime, Madam Speaker, the stock of public external debt amounted to US $14.87 billion as at end-June 2022. Of this amount, Central Government external debt was US $13.25 billion while guaranteed and non-guaranteed external debt for State Owned Enterprises was US $1.50 billion and US $113.69 million, respectively.
  5. Madam, Central Government external debt increased by 1.6 percent to US $13.25 billion as at end-June 2022 from US $13.04 billion as at end-December 2021. This was on account of

disbursements mainly from multilateral creditors. Loans from multilaterals are obtained on very concessional terms, meaning around five years grace period, very low interest rates and are repayable over long time periods. The stock of Central Government external debt includes US $1.8 billion principal arrears and US $868.4 million interest arrears arising from the ongoing debt service standstill.

  1. Debt levels are still rising for two reasons. Firstly, there are some projects carried over from the previous Government which were being financed by loans. Whereas many were cancelled, it was deemed necessary to carry on with some because the projects were at an advanced stage. Secondly, the concessional loans I mentioned earlier are needed to revive key sectors of the economy so that the country has capacity to service debt once restructured. These funds are also needed to finance essential services such as education and health.
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  2. Madam Speaker, the stock of Government guarantees was US $1.50 billion as at end-June 2022. ZESCO and Kafue Gorge Lower Hydropower Project accounted for 93 percent of these guarantees.
  3. Madam, the stock of domestic debt, that is, Treasury bills and Government bonds, increased by 5.3 percent to K203.9 billion as at end August 2022 from K192.9 billion as at end-December 2021. The funds raised were used to finance the budget.
    Domestic Arrears
  4. Madam Speaker, the stock of audited central Government domestic arrears or pending bills, excluding fuel and electricity, decreased by 8.4 percent to K44.0 billion as at end-June 2022 from K48.1 billion as at end-December 2021. The reduction is due to Government paying suppliers of goods and services and curbing the accumulation of new arrears. By doing so, we have begun addressing the injustice of Government impoverishing its

people by delaying to pay for goods and services provided.

  1. Madam, when fuel arrears and outstanding ZESCO bills to independent power producers are included, the stock of domestic arrears decreased by 4.4 percent to K76.4 billion as at end-June 2022 from K79.9 billion as at end- December 2021.
  2. Madam Speaker, to halt the accumulation of domestic arrears and reduce the stock, Government will continue to implement the Dismantling of Domestic Arrears Strategy. The Strategy will among others, link procurement commitments to the approved budget and provide funds to dismantle arrears.
    Monetary and Financial Performance
  3. Madam Speaker, the growth in consumer prices, as measured by the inflation rate, has slowed to single digits. For September 2022, inflation was recorded at 9.9 percent from 22.1 percent in September last year. The key drivers
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    of lower inflation have been the appreciation of the Kwacha and improved supply of food items.
  4. Madam, the amount of money lent by the banking system grew by 13 percent in the first half of 2022 against a contraction of 5.4 percent in the second half of 2021. The increase was largely due to accelerated disbursements to eligible financial service providers from funds provided by the Bank of Zambia under the Targeted Medium-Term Refinancing Facility. The Facility was established in 2020 to strengthen and enhance financial sector resilience as well as support economic recovery during the COVID-19 pandemic. We recognise, however, that financing remains a challenge especially for SMEs.
  5. Madam Speaker, the performance of the banking sector remained strong, supported by growth in capital through retained earnings. Liquidity conditions were also favourable on account of high stock of liquid assets and

disbursements from the Targeted Medium-Term Refinancing Facility. Asset quality improved as the non- performing loans ratio continued to be below the 10.0 percent prudential benchmark, at 6.4 percent at end- August 2022. The improvement in the credit performance was largely attributed to recoveries, restructuring of credit facilities and bad loan write-offs.

  1. Madam, the performance of the non-bank financial institutions sector has also improved. The ratio of non-performing loans reduced to 13.8 percent at end-August 2022 from 23.1 percent at end-August 2021. This is attributed to Government clearance of third-party arrears and remaining current in remitting loan instalments for civil servants to the non-bank financial institutions.
    External Sector Performance
  2. Madam Speaker, preliminary data indicate that exports were US $5.964 billion during the first half of 2022 compared to US $5.216 billion during the same period last
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    year, a growth of 14.3 percent. This outturn was largely explained by the increase in copper exports earnings that rose by 12 percent to US $4.4 billion, driven by higher copper prices. Imports also increased by 41.5 percent to US $4.3 billion, supported mostly by the appreciation of the Kwacha against the US dollar and improved economic activity. Most of the imports were capital items and raw materials used in production. Overall, the trade balance remained in surplus, at US $1.6 billion.
  3. Madam, as at end-August 2022, gross international reserves were US $3.0 billion, representing 3.5 months of import cover. This is above the target of at least 3 months of import cover for 2022.
  4. Madam Speaker, on a year-to- date basis, the Kwacha has appreciated by 5.2 percent to K15.79 per US dollar. The gain has largely been on account of improved supply of foreign exchange mainly owing to increased inflows from the mining sector and greater confidence in the

Government, particularly commitment to reforms. The exchange rate of the Kwacha against major currencies has been relatively stable over this period.
Part II
MACROECONOMIC OBJECTIVES

  1. Madam Speaker, the New Dawn Administration has laid a solid foundation to stimulate growth, create jobs and improve the livelihoods of our people. This will help us attain the Vision 2030 of becoming a prosperous middle- income nation.
  2. Madam, to consolidate and build on the achievements on the economic front, the following macroeconomic objectives will be pursued in 2023:
    (a) Attain a real GDP growth rate of at least 4.0 percent;
    (b) Reduce inflation to within the target band of 6-8 percent by the end of the year;
    (c) Maintain international reserves
    above 3 months of import cover;
    (d) Mobilise domestic revenue to at least 20.9 percent of GDP;
    (e) Achieve a fiscal deficit of not more than 7.7 percent of GDP; and
    (f) Limit domestic borrowing to not more than 3.0 percent of GDP.
    POLICIES AND STRATEGIES FOR 2023
    42 Madam Speaker, I will now present the policies and strategies that underpin the allocation of resources in the 2023 Budget. These are prescribed according to the strategic development areas of the Eighth National Development Plan, namely: Economic Transformation and Job Creation; Human and Social Development; Environmental Sustainability; and Good Governance Environment.
    ECONOMIC TRANSFORMATION AND JOB CREATION
  3. Madam Speaker, the problems we have faced in the past emanate from debt unsustainability. These
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will now be under control. The discussions with creditors for restructuring our debts have started, the exchange rate of the Kwacha is stable, inflation is falling and we have stepped up expenditure on social services for our people.

  1. However, serious issues remain outstanding. These include limited job opportunities at all levels, from the most educated to the uneducated. For those in employment, average earnings are generally low. Our infrastructure such as roads, railways, energy, schools and hospitals requires a lot of attention. I must also add that even where infrastructure exists, a lot of it requires attention in terms of maintenance and repairs. These issues come out very often and with lots of passion from MPs.
  2. Madam Speaker, whilst there have been attempts by past administrations to address these development challenges, it is clear that little progress has been made, particularly in creating decent job opportunities. This is due, in part, to the fact that the population is
    expanding much faster than the few jobs that get created. But the issues of providing jobs, better incomes, better infrastructure and better social services are issues where we must succeed at all costs.
  3. Madam Speaker, Zambia will not fail. We take inspiration from countries that were poorer than us, with less natural resources than ourselves and yet they have transformed themselves into prosperous and progressive economies. In the process they have provided millions of jobs, upgrading their infrastructure to first world class standards and providing decent livelihoods to their people.
  4. The success stories of the South East Asian countries have been told over and over again. The formula for their success is not rocket science. Economic success requires creating an enabling macroeconomic environment, embracing the private sector, creating a conducive legal and administrative environment that is friendly to business, educating the
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people and keeping them healthy. Once these conditions are established, it becomes easy to attract investment. These are all things that we are capable of emulating provided we are willing to change our perceptions about the development process. And this is what we shall do.

  1. It is clear that it is only through stimulating and sustaining economic growth that we can create enough jobs to reduce poverty and generate sufficient tax revenue to fund infrastructure, pay for social services, improve the livelihoods of our people and thereby reduce inequality.
  2. Madam, growing the economy must also be explained. It simply means that each year, Zambia’s production of most goods and services must increase from what was produced the previous year. Not just a bit but significantly so. Also, not just from one year to the next but every year’s production must exceed that of the previous year and continuously so for ever and ever. To achieve this, we must
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    love and promote investments. This is what has changed Asia.
  3. To achieve what I have just described Madam, it is necessary that social partners collaborate and work together. The private sector has to take centre stage in the economic transformation journey. It is the private sector to invest in and manage enterprises that engage in the ever-expanding production.
  4. Government’s role is to design and implement, together with partners, policies and strategies to attract and secure investment in sectors such as agriculture, mining, tourism, and manufacturing that will drive growth of our economy. Further, Government must maintain an economic and business environment that supports growth. It must also invest in supporting infrastructure and manpower development. This must be done without corruption while ensuring judicious use of public funds.
  5. Private citizens also have a very important role to play. Each one of us must appreciate our responsibilities as citizens. Above

all, we must understand that the common good can only be so because we have, as individuals, contributed to it to the best of our ability.

  1. The principles I have just outlined are what will guide us as we implement policies and strategies to attract investment in sectors such as agriculture, mining, tourism, and manufacturing that will drive growth of our economy. This will in turn raise economic performance.
  2. Madam Speaker, I will now present the specifics of performance, policies and strategies in the Economic Transformation and Job Creation strategic development area.
    Agriculture, Livestock and Fisheries Sector
  3. Madam Speaker, agriculture, livestock and fisheries sector remains the main source of livelihood for the majority of our people. It is the largest employer of our population, provides food, raw materials to industry and earns the
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    country foreign exchange.
  4. Madam, in the crop subsector, the performance was generally weak during the 2021/2022 agricultural season. The production of crops such as maize, rice, sorghum and cassava declined due to the late onset of rains as well as drought and flash floods in some parts of the country.
  5. Madam Speaker, to increase crop productivity among small- scale farmers, Government is improving extension service delivery. This year, Government has commenced recruitment of 256 extension officers and additional officers will be recruited in 2023. Government will procure 1,623 extension kits, 1,000 tablets, 621 motorbikes and rehabilitate over 536 camp houses. With all these measures, 1.5 million smallholder farmers will be provided with extension services through physical visits and e-extension platforms.
  6. Madam, with regard to irrigation development, Government will construct a total of forty dams

across the country over the medium term. In 2023, sixteen dams will be constructed. To actualise the Chiansi Irrigation Scheme in Kafue District, Government has secured financing of US $10 million from the African Development Bank (AfDB) to cover 600 hectares in- field irrigation by smallholder farmers. The financing will also be used to establish storage facilities and a youth skills development centre. This project will benefit over 12,000 people.

  1. Madam Speaker, there is need to improve agricultural productivity and we will do this through undertaking comprehensive reforms. I am duty bound to provide clarity on a false matter that was at one time circulating in some social media to the effect that Farmer Input Support Programme (FISP) will no longer be available because of the IMF supported Programme. To the contrary, FISP continues in 2022/2023 farming season with the same strength as before.
  2. However, Madam, in addition to providing input support, FISP will be reformed to include extension service support; irrigation development; access to finance; support to value addition; and storage and logistics. The programme will also ensure better targeting and equity in the provision of subsidies and services. The new expanded programme will be called
    Comprehensive Support Programme.
    Agriculture
  3. Under this comprehensive agriculture support programme, what is, however, true is that Government will be scrutinising the beneficiaries in detail to ensure that only the targeted and deserving people receive subsidised fertilisers. My colleague, the Minister of Agriculture, will elaborate as he presents the budget for his Ministry.
  4. When I come to the Budget section of my speech, I will provide the full details of the financial outlay that Government is proposing for the programme for the 2023/2024 farming season.
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  5. Madam Speaker, this new approach is important as it will contribute to our national food securityespeciallyatatimelikenow when the global food supply is tight. It also helps to uplift many of our small-scale farmers who, in any case, produce most of our food.
  6. As we continue with FISP under the new programme, it is important that we understand its limitations in the development process. Earlier on, I spoke about the paramount importance of the need for the economy to grow, including in agriculture. With the tightness in the global food supplies arising from the war in the Ukraine, the world is looking towards parts of Africa with appropriate agronomical conditions to step in and grow more food for export. And the markets are there. Our Government has already secured market access to the European Union, United Arab Emirates, South Africa, and China for various crops and livestock such as cattle and goats.
  7. It is in that vein that in 2023, the Government is set to aggressively
    revive the development of farm blocks. This time, we must get it right. The main objective is to promote diversification, sustainability and jobs in the agri- food sector in the country, especially for exports
  8. A farm block is a large area of intensive agriculture. A farm block will typically be between 50,000 and 100,000 hectares of land. The block will have one or two core or main ventures which produce a given agricultural product at large scale. The agricultural product may be input into a processing factory on site like the way Nakambala Estate is for sugar. Along with the core venture there will be other farms of different sizes, including small scale out-growers also producing for the on-site factory.
  9. Madam, in advancing the revival of farm block development, I am pleased to report that we have secured US $300 million from the World Bank for the development of farm blocks such as Nansanga in Central Province, Luswishi in Copperbelt Province and Luena in
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Luapula Province. This financing is concessional with a maturity period of 30 years and a grace period of 5 years.

  1. This is money we are borrowing on very soft terms to create jobs and make money for Zambia. The main objective of this programme is to promote diversification, value addition and jobs in the agri-food sector in the country. The massive production on industrial scale that will happen in farm blocks will satisfy the export markets in Africa and beyond as mentioned earlier.
  2. Farm blocks will create thousands of jobs in agricultural production, in processing factories on site and in allied services. And the jobs are at all levels from engineers, technicians, agronomists, foremen, ordinary labour, accountants, and many others.
  3. The Government’s task in developing a farm block is to put in the key infrastructure like main access and internal roads, power reticulation, water development for irrigation where feasible and an
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    administrative centre so that as many approvals as feasible are available on site.
  4. With the infrastructure in place, Madam Speaker, Government can then invite the best private sector actors from anywhere to invest alongside local investors in the farming operations using their own funding. The provision of infrastructure on the farm block is helpful to would be production investors because it enables them to get into production very quickly with little time wasted on preliminaries. It is expected that substantial progress will be made in 2023 to develop farm blocks. We are ready for the investors. Zambia is back in business.
  5. As earlier stated, money for farm block development is available and the Ministry of Agriculture is currently evaluating a number of potential sites for development before making the final selection. The Government intends to implement the farm blocks with excellence and then rollout the programme as we gain experience.
  6. Madam Speaker, the livestock subsector grew in the first half of 2022. Production of milk, eggs, chicken, beef and pork increased due to the increase in livestock population and improved animal husbandry practices. Notwithstanding the good performance, the sector experienced outbreaks of infectious diseases such as CBPP and African Swine Fever.
  7. Government will enhance surveillance, prevention and control. Specific interventions will include the construction of bio- security infrastructure on trunk roads and completion of laboratories. Other interventions include establishment of an animal vaccine plant, promotion of veterinary public health and food safety and enhancement of animal health research and diagnostics.
  8. Madam Speaker, Government will also develop a robust animal identification and traceability system. This will reduce the levels of stock theft. It will also enhance the country’s potential to export as
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    it will meet the international standards that require identification and traceability of livestock products from “farm to fork”.
  9. Madam, the fisheries subsector registered positive performance in the first half of the year. This is attributed to an increase in fish production under both capture fisheries and aquaculture. Capture fisheries increased on account of promotion and enforcement of sustainable fishing methods. The increase in aquaculture was due to the provision of credit to small scale fish farmers as well as access to inputs such as fingerlings and feed under the Aquaculture Seed Fund. In 2023, Government will continue to support the aquaculture value chain players through the Aquaculture Seed Fund as well as promotion and enforcement of sustainable fishing practices in the capture fisheries.
  10. Madam Speaker, to improve service delivery in the fisheries and livestock subsector, Government will recruit extension officers as well as procure motor bikes and equipment.
  11. Madam, to improve the policy and regulatory framework, Government will formulate the National Animal Health and National Aquaculture and Fisheries policies. Government will also review and amend the Animal Health Act No. 27 of 2010 and Animal Identification Act No. 28 of 2010. Further, to provide an enabling environment and promote livestock production and productivity, Government will develop the Livestock Development Bill. Government will also reduce
    the cost of doing business by automating applications and issuance of licenses, permits, certificates and other authorisations through the electronic single window.
    Tourism Sector
  12. Madam Speaker, the tourism sector is still recovering from the adverse effects of the COVID-19 pandemic. The number of international tourist arrivals increased to 496,456 during the first half of 2022 compared to 239,885 in the same period last year. This follows the easing of COVID-19 related restrictions partly attributed
    to improved vaccination rate globally.
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  13. Madam, the easing of COVID- 19 restrictions has enabled us to host a number of meetings, international conferences and events. Notable among them was the Fourth Mid-Year Coordination Meeting of the African Union, Eastern and Southern Africa Anti- Money Laundering Group, the 8th African Federation of Institute of Internal Auditors and local events such as traditional ceremonies.
  14. Madam Speaker, to stimulate growth in the sector, Government will continue to bid for hosting of meetings, international conferences and events. In 2023, Zambia will host the 45th Annual Meeting of the Association of African Central Banks. We will also continue to promote tourism development by providing incentives to attract more investment into the sector. I will outline specific incentives in Part Three.
  15. Madam, to sustain the current jobs and create new ones in the sector, Government will invest in infrastructure in the Kasaba Bay, a growth pole that was abandoned ten

years ago. Liuwa National Park and other tourism sites will also receive attention to unlock opportunities for investment. To this end, Government is in the process of securing US$100 million from the World Bank for this purpose.

  1. Madam Speaker, to increase efficiency in processing applications, Government has introduced 26 services for the tourism sector on the Government Service Bus such as Bird Hunting Licence, Hotel Manager Practising Certificate, Casino Licence and Professional Hunter’s Licence. Government will also streamline the legal framework by reviewing the Zambia Wildlife Act, Tourism and Hospitality Act and the National Heritage and Conservation Commission Act. The review will address the challenges of cumbersome regulatory frameworks and uncoordinated procedures among regulatory agencies. In this regard, Government is piloting the tourism single licence system in Livingstone.
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    Mining Sector
  2. Madam Speaker, the mining sector continues to be a major driver of the economy, accounting for 17.5 percent of GDP and over 70 percent of foreign exchange earnings in 2021. Production has, however, stagnated at an annual average of 797,000 metric tonnes in the last 5 years.
  3. While our mining output has stagnated, our northern neighbour, the Democratic Republic of Congo, has not only caught up with our production levels but has gone significantly well ahead of us. Ten years ago, Zambia was producing about 800,000 metric tonnes of copper while that of the DRC was about 400,000. While we are still hovering around 800,000 metric tonnes, DRC has expanded to 1.8 million metric tonnes, which is more than twice our production. All indications are that it won’t be long before they hit close to 2.5 million tons per year.
  4. The stagnation of copper mining in Zambia is a vivid example of what

happens when partnership between industry and Government fails. Zambia has been left behind this potential boom because of the unstable investment climate, especially the frequent arbitrary changes in taxation, that reigned in the past decade. This demotivated potential investments.

  1. Attaining the 3 million metric tonnes production is very important for the future of our economy. More direct mining jobs will be created. Even more jobs in related and indirect areas such as transport, engineering and many more will be created. It will be a game changer. I am happy to note that some new mines are expected to come into production at Kitumba Copper Project in Mumbwa, Kashime in Mkushi and Mwekera Copper Mines in Ndola.
  2. Madam, to boost production in the sector, this administration will avoid the pitfalls of the past decade and will therefore maintain policy and tax consistency for the sector. This will set the country into a powerful mining expansion drive in
    pursuit of the 3 million metric tonnes of copper production in the next nine years.
  3. In recognition of this change in approach, the UPND Government has already managed to secure an investment of US$1.35 billion for the expansion of Kansanshi Project and development of the brand-new Enterprise Nickel Project by First Quantum Minerals. The Nickel Mine will be the largest in Africa. This is just the beginning.
  4. As Government works towards the attainment of the production capacity of 3 million metric tonnes, we are working to urgently resolve the challenges at Konkola and Mopani Copper Mines. It has taken some time to resolve the challenges because of their complex nature. However, a lot of head way has been made and once we conclude soon, the Copperbelt will once again spring back to vigorous life of work, unity and joy.
  5. Madam Speaker, diversification in the mining sector is gaining momentum. I have just mentioned
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the nickel mine in Kalumbila District which is set to commence commercial production in 2023. Coal production at two sites in Southern Province and manganese production in Chipili District of Luapula Province have also commenced.

  1. Madam, Government is also embarking on attracting exploration in the sector as part of the effort towards the 3 million metric tonnes production target. In this regard, private sector capital is being attracted to carryout aerial mapping of mineral resources to unlock the unexploited mining potential.
  2. Madam, to enhance regulatory oversight in the sector, Government will establish a mining regulatory institution. Further, Government has enhanced reporting requirements of production, costs and mineral content. Given the importance of the mining sector to the economy, Government will enhance its strategic involvement by enhancing its participation through acquisition of golden shares. These measures will enhance participation of
    21
    Zambians in the mining sector while attracting vital largescale capital, technology and international experience.
  3. Madam Speaker, to promote artisanal and small-scale mining, Government will implement measures to formalise their operations and support them with the necessary equipment and training to increase production. The formalisation will also assist artisanal and small-scale miners to access affordable capital and also to partner with potential foreign investors through joint ventures.
  4. Further, Government will empower Zambians with mining licences, create offtake market opportunities and streamline the taxation system. Government will also licence buyers of gold and other precious minerals so that the trade is formalised. I will announce a simplified and lower rate tax regime that shall apply to artisanal and small-scale miners in Part Three of my Address. Let me urge the

small-scale miners to take advantage of the simplified regime and formalise their businesses because it is safer for them than operating in the underground economy.
Manufacturing

  1. Madam Speaker, manufacturing is critical in stimulating growth and achieving value addition. However, the contribution of the sector, at 9.4 percent of GDP in 2021, remains low if we are to attain real economic transformation.
  2. Madam, Government will continue to promote multi-facility economic zones as a way of expanding the country’s industrial and manufacturing base. The Lusaka South Multi-facility Economic Zone has this year attracted more than 30 companies with a total pledged investment of US $230 million and 4,000 jobs. Construction of production facilities has commenced for 6 companies while 21 companies are awaiting approval from the Zambia
  3. Government has also facilitated the establishment of a multi-facility economic zone in Kalumbila to promote mining and non-mining linked manufacturing for both the Zambian and the Congolese markets. With this, Kalumbila will become an industrial city, grounded on supporting the mining industry. In addition, real estate development will be undertaken in Kalumbila so that there is orderly urbanisation. On the Copperbelt, Government is promoting the manufacturing of electric car batteries.
  4. Madam Speaker, a fertiliser company has commenced operations in Chilanga District with an investment of US $138 million. At full capacity, the company will produce 700,000 metric tonnes of Compound D and 300,000 metric tonnes of Urea per annum. This investment has created 300 jobs for our people, which will increase to 600 when fully operational. This investment will not only result in national self-sufficiency but also improve reliability of fertiliser supply and save the country much needed foreign exchange.
    22
    Environmental Agency.
    Management
  5. Madam, to improve the business environment, Government reviewed the Zambia Development Agency Act, which is the principal legislation to promote trade and investment in the country. The review has led to the subsequent development of two Bills namely, the Zambia Development Agency Bill and the Investment, Trade and Business Development Bill. The Zambia Development Agency Bill provides for the administrative and operational matters of the Agency while the Investment, Trade and BusinessDevelopmentBillprovides for the promotion of trade, investment and business development. The two Bills are currently under consideration by this august House.
  6. Madam Speaker, to enhance the contribution of manufacturing, I will, in Part three of this Address, announce measures to stimulate growth in the sector.
    Small and Medium Enterprise Development
  7. Madam Speaker, SMEs make significant contribution to
    production, employment and income generation for the majority of our people. SMEs represent over 90 percent of all businesses in the country and are the largest employer.
  8. Madam, the growth of SMEs is largely constrained by lack of affordable finance, market access and inadequate business development skills. To ensure that SMEs access affordable finance from financial services providers, Government will continue to empower them through the Constituency Development Fund and Citizens Economic Empowerment Commission.
  9. Madam Speaker, once the administrative teething problems of the CDF have been overcome, SMEs throughout the country will have a lot of business building schools, teachers’ houses, clinics, and constructing water wells, among others. On top of this, the Citizens Economic Empowerment Commission has developed seven empowerment products valued at K365 million targeting citizens, SMEs and cooperatives.
    23
  10. Madam, to facilitate access to affordable loans by SMEs from financial institutions, we have increased budgetary allocation to the Zambia Credit Guarantee Scheme. The Bank of Zambia is also collaborating with stakeholders to provide credit guarantee for SMEs. The scheme will commence in 2023 on a pilot basis. Further, Cooperating Partners have provided a US $20 million Loan Guarantee Scheme for SMEs through the financial sector.
  11. Madam Speaker, to contribute to increased market access for SMEs, Government is implementing the Zambia Agri- business and Trade Project with the World Bank. The principal objective of the Project is to link emerging farmers and agri-business SMEs to larger markets. This is being done by structuring support for off-take opportunities.
    Energy Sector
  12. Madam Speaker, a stable and sustainable energy sector is critical for fostering growth in the economy. Government will,
    24
    therefore, continue to undertake reforms in the sector to make it more viable and supportive to the economic transformation agenda.
  13. Madam, to enhance efficiency in the fuel supply chain, the Government has withdrawn from the importation and supply of petroleum products. This business will now be undertaken by the private sector. This will not only provide business opportunities to Zambians to take part in the petroleum supply chain and create jobs, but will also lower the transaction costs because middlemen will be eliminated. The role of Government will be limited to that of being a regulator and ensuring cost reflective pricing. In addition, Government will ensure the maintenance of strategic reserves.
  14. Madam Speaker, to improve efficiency in the petroleum sub- sector, Government is in the process of converting TAZAMA Pipeline from a petroleum feedstock carrier to a carrier of finished products, particularly

diesel. This will reduce the cost of transporting diesel in the country which is currently brought in dearly by trucks. In this regard, INDENI Refinery will no longer process feedstock but will play other roles in the petroleum supply chain.

  1. Madam, in the electricity subsector, the country has achieved a surplus in electricity generation capacity of 1,156 megawatts. This follows the coming on board of 600 megawatts generation capacity at the Kafue Gorge Lower Hydro Power Station. This has enabled the country to increase exports of electricity to the Southern Africa Power Pool worth over US $100 million during the first half of this year. Maamba Collieries will also be engaged to increase generation to 600 megawatts to improve the energy mix.
  2. Madam Speaker, to facilitate export of power to the East African region, Government is in the process of securing financing to complete the remaining in-country circuits for the Zambia-Tanzania- Kenya interconnector.
    25
  3. Madam, the aspiration of the New Dawn Administration is to provide access to electricity to all Zambians. In this regard, Government has continued implementing the Rural Electrification Master Plan which targets to electrify 1,217 rural growth centres by 2030. So far, 525 rural growth centres, representing 43.1 percent have been electrified. In 2023, Government will significantly increase the allocation to the Rural Electrification Programme to accelerate the electrification of more rural growth centres.
    Transport and Logistics
  4. Madam Speaker, the transport sector plays an important role in economic growth. It facilitates commerce and trade in goods and services as well as the movement of people. In this regard, Government has prioritised the development and maintenance of
    transport and infrastructure.
    logistics
  5. Madam Speaker, in the road sub sector, there is a lot of outstanding work to be done. To

overcome the limitations imposed by scarce financial resources, roads with good traffic volumes will be undertaken using the Public Private Partnership mode. In other words, the private sector will fund the roads and get their money back through toll fees. Many of the roads are already at the stage of final negotiations with potential partners and some work is likely to start this year and then progress into the next year and beyond. These include Lusaka-Ndola dual carriageway, Chingola-Solwezi, Ndola-Mufulira, Chingola-Kasumbalesa and the Lumwana-Kambimba roads.

  1. Further, Government will maintain, rehabilitate and upgrade critical economic roads. Government will also rehabilitate and maintain rural roads across the country to improve access to communities using the Zambia National Service that will be re- equipped. I also appeal to my fellow Honourable Members of Parliament and their councils, where appropriate, to invest into road maintenance equipment for fixing rural roads.
  2. Madam Speaker, to improve efficiency and reduce time spent at the border, Government will construct and upgrade access to and infrastructure at key border posts. These include the Sakania, Chalwe, Mokambo, Kambimba, Kipushi, Katima-Mulilo, Mpulungu, Chanida, Mwami, and Nakonde. The roads leading to Namafulo and Zombe will be rehabilitated. In addition, pontoons will be stationed at Luangwa and Namafulo.
  3. Madam, Government will expedite the establishment of the Kazungula Bridge Authority in collaboration with the Government of Botswana. The Authority will manage the bridge and associated infrastructure to foster regional trade and operationalise the 24-hour working schedule at the border.
  4. Madam Speaker, to enhance transport by air, Government will commence the upgrading of aerodromes. The improvements at these aerodromes will promote tourism and trade in the country.
  5. Madam, in the rail subsector, 26

Government is in discussion with our neighbouring countries to improve the rail network to facilitate trade in the region. This is in recognition of the critical role rail transport plays in transforming and developing our country.
Information and Communication Technology Sector

  1. Madam Speaker, information and communication technology (ICT) is pivotal in socio-economic development and employment creation as it cuts across all sectors. ICTs are also vital for enhancing trade through provision of e- commerce platforms as well as deepening financial inclusion.
  2. Madam, to accelerate the development of a digital economy, Government will implement the National Digital Transformation Strategy and review the Information and Communication Technology Act No. 15 of 2009. This will create an enabling environment for uptake of digital services by enhancing opportunities for investment in
    27
    infrastructure and use of digital platforms. Further, Government will formulate policies to encourage the uptake of ICTs by persons with disabilities.
  3. Madam Speaker, the Postal Services Act No. 22 of 2009 will also be reviewed to adequately address the current challenges with courier services. The objective is to stimulate and ensure fair competition in the provision of postal and courier services.
  4. Madam, the New Dawn Government has recognised science, technology and innovation as catalysts for development. In this regard, Government is reviewing the existing legislation to create an enabling environment for the adoption and application of science, technology and innovation. This will improve development planning, electronic communication, data collection, environmental management and agricultural production.

HUMAN AND SOCIAL DEVELOPMENT

  1. Madam Speaker, investment in human capital is critical to stimulating growth and improving livelihoods. Therefore, investment in education, skills, health and water and sanitation as well as social protection is essential if we are to attain meaningful development.
    Education and Skills Development
  2. Madam Speaker, education and skills development is a powerful vehicle for reducing intergenerational poverty and inequality. It also increases productivity and sets a foundation for sustainable growth.
  3. Madam, allow me to tick the checklist of the promises we made to this august House last year in my Budget Address regarding education and skills development.
    • First was the provision of free
    education up to Grade 12 . This we
    have achieved through the
    elimination of tuition, Parent-
    Teacher Association and examination fees, resulting in
    overwhelming enrolment.
    • Second was the recruitment of 30,000 teachers. This we have achieved with 30,496 teachers recruited and deployed. So far, 27,645 teachers have been placed on the payroll after completing reporting formalities. The rest will be introduced on the payroll once they complete the reporting formalities.
    • Third was providing bursaries for vulnerable learners. Again, this we have achieved by making these resources available using the Constituency Development Fund.
  4. Madam, Government will continue to implement measures to improve the quality of education. To this end, an additional 4,500 teachers will be recruited in 2023. Priority for the deployment of these teachers will be given to rural areas
    which are more deprived. Further, Government will upgrade teachers who are currently serving in positions that are lower than their qualifications, including those who have been acting in higher positions for a long time without confirmation.
  5. Madam Speaker, while we have made some headway in teacher availability, challenges remain in the sector. Theproblem of teachers shunning
    28

remote areas and earning salaries designated for remote schools while actually not being there is real. The curriculum also needs to change to include, courses on financial literacy and anti-corruption, among others. It must make education responsive to skills needs of industry, as well as investing in ICT infrastructure and use of innovative methods of delivering education. Finally, many of our schools are not adequately supervised and inspected to ensure adherence to standards. In 2023, we are providing money specifically for ensuring, without fail, that schools are visited by standards compliance personnel.

  1. Madam, to increase access to education, Government will next year complete the construction of 56 Early Childhood Education Centres. Madam Speaker, you may be aware that there are many high schools, some going as far back as 2010, which were abandoned midstream in the past twelve years. Government will embark on completing them in 2023, 115 secondary schools in total. Further,
    29
    Government will commence the construction of 120 new secondary schools with the support of the World Bank.
  2. Madam Speaker, with regard to tertiary education, Government will establish polytechnics to increase access to skills training for the youth. Government will in 2023 commission Lundazi, Nsumbu and Mporokoso Trades Training Institutes.
  3. Madam Speaker, last year, Government undertook to provide technical skills to youths in each constituency. It was envisaged that in time, the graduates from the skills colleges would be the ones to be contracted to undertake CDF projects in their areas for jobs like constructing classroom blocks, teachers’ houses, among others. Local people being turned into local contractors. I am happy to report that this Programme has made progress and some youths have already graduated. District Councils are being encouraged to link them with on-going contract work so that they deepen their practical skills

before they can be contractors in their own right. Going forward, new intakes will be admitted and the training scheme will continue.

  1. Madam Speaker, Government will continue to modernize TEVET institutions with state-of-the-art training equipment through the Skills Development Fund. Focus will also be directed towards the rehabilitation of workshops, building capacity of trainers, reviewing curricula and syllabi as well as upgrading the level of training offered by institutions.
  2. Madam Speaker, you may recall that last year we made an undertaking to revisit the issue of meal allowances to improve the welfare of our students in public universities who are on the loan scheme. I can now confirm that meal allowances will be re- introduced in 2023.
    Health
  3. Madam Speaker, health is wealth. We cannot stimulate growth without investing in the health of our people. Government will continue
    30
    to improve the provision of quality healthcare services through recruitment of health personnel, infrastructure development and provision of drugs and medical supplies.
  4. Madam, Government has fulfilled its promise of recruiting more than 11,000 health personnel. So far, 8,563 health personnel have been placed on the payroll. I am delighted to inform this august House that Government will in 2023 recruit an additional 3,000 personnel.
  5. Madam Speaker, to ensure a resilient healthcare system and attain universal health coverage, Government has increased allocations for the purchase of drugs and medical supplies. This will result in improved availability of essential medicines and medical supplies. In addition, Government will equip and re-equip health facilities with modern medical equipment.
  6. Madam, to improve access to healthcare facilities Government will

complete the construction of a specialized hospital in Lusaka for women and children. In addition, 36 district hospitals, 16 mini hospitals and 83 health posts will be completed across the country. We will also commence the construction of the second phase of mini hospitals. Rehabilitation and maintenance of health facilities will also be undertaken.
Water and Sanitation

  1. Madam Speaker, to increase access to clean and safe water and sanitation services, Government will accelerate the completion of construction and rehabilitation of water supply and sanitation infrastructure. To enhance hygiene in public places, such as, markets and bus stations, Government will commence the construction of water borne sanitation infrastructure across the country.
  2. Madam, Government remains committed to providing clean and safe water for our people. In this regard, Kafulafuta Dam Project on the Copperbelt is expected to be
    31
    completed in 2023, connecting water supply to over a million households in Masaiti, Luanshya, Mpongwe and Ndola Districts. The Lusaka Water and Sanitation Project in Matero and industrial area will also be completed in 2023.
  3. Madam Speaker, other water and sanitation projects which are ongoing include the Integrated Small Towns Water Supply and Sanitation Project in Nakonde and Mpika Districts; Transforming Rural Livelihoods in Western Zambia; Nkana Water and Sanitation Project; Chipata Water Supply and Sanitation Project; and the Zambia Sanitation Project on the Copperbelt.
  4. Madam, Government launched the Zambia Water Investment Programme to increase access to clean water and sanitation services especially in the rural areas. Development partners will be engaged to mobilise resources to finance the Programme.
    Social Protection
  5. Madam Speaker, in addition to the good stories I have already told

you this afternoon, I have a few more in the area of social protection. First, Government will continue to scale up and enhance social protection programmes with improved targeting and selection mechanisms to uplift the wellbeing of the vulnerable. To this end, Government has scaled up the Social Cash Transfer Programme by increasing the number of beneficiaries and transfer value. As at July 2022, the number of beneficiaries rose to 973,323 from 880,539 in August 2021. By the end of this year, the number of beneficiaries will increase to 1,021,000. In 2023, the number of beneficiaries will be 1,374,500.

  1. Second, Madam Speaker, Government will continue providing education grants for girls in social cash transfer beneficiary households under the Keeping Girls in School Initiative. Third, Government will continue with the Food Security Pack Programme and the Public Welfare Assistance Scheme.
  2. Fourth, Madam, you will recall
    32
    that for many years people were waiting for up to three years to access their terminal benefits under the Public Service Pensions Fund. Going forward, not any more. I am pleased to inform this august House that we are now meeting pension obligations as they fall due. You retire today, three months later, which is provided for processing your papers, you get paid. We are walking the talk.
  3. Madam Speaker, now that we are current with the Public Service Pensions Fund, beginning 2023, Government will focus on reducing the waiting period of pensioners under the Local Authorities Superannuation Fund.
    ENVIRONMENTAL SUSTAINABILITY
  4. Madam Speaker, to promote green growth, Government will promote sustainable management of the environment, eco-systems and natural resources. To this end, climate change mitigation and adaptation will be strengthened through the development of climate resilient infrastructure.
  5. Madam, Government, in collaboration with cooperating partners, will continue implementing projects aimed at sustainable management of the environment through projects such as Transforming Landscapes for Resilience and Development; Zambia Integrated Forestry Landscape Programme; and Strengthening Climate Resilience of Agricultural Livelihood in Agro- Ecological Regions.
  6. Madam Speaker, concern has been raised about the rate of deforestation. This reflects lack of transparency in the exploitation of our forestry resources and poor returns to the loggers for the timber they sell. In a quest to increase the value for loggers, Government will, in 2023, commence the setting up of timber exchanges which will enable many buyers and sellers to meet in one place at pre-announced times. These exchanges will provide better transparency, and with many buyers available, it is anticipated that our timber will fetch better value.
  7. The first exchange is targeted
    for Nangweshi in Sioma District. Its location in a timber producing area, along an excellent high way to the sea ports in the south and availability of accommodation, makes it an attractive location for the purpose. When this first timber exchange is successful, more exchanges will be opened.
  8. Madam Speaker, Government will extend and enhance coverage of early warning systems to facilitate preparedness and prompt response to adverse weather events. A total of 120 automatic weather stations will be installed across the country in 2023 in addition to the 120 installed this year.
  9. Madam, to enable the participation of project developers in the carbon market through the United Nations Framework Convention on Climate Change, Government signed a green growth compact worth £1billion with the UK Government. This will facilitate foreign direct investment from the United Kingdom in renewable energy, urban planning and trade connectivity, among others.
    33
  10. Madam Speaker, to support low carbon development pathways, Government is pursuing innovative sources of financing such as green bonds. In this regard, Government has developed guidelines and listing rules for green bond trading. Further, we have commenced sensitization among potential green bond issuers and investors across the country. Additionally, we are undertaking development of a pipeline of potential developmental projects to be financed through green bonds. I will be announcing incentives to support the development of the green bond market in Part Three of my Address.
  11. Madam, carbon trading has emerged as a promising source of financing while contributing to address the global challenge of climate change. In this regard, Government is developing legislation to regulate the carbon market in line with the Kyoto Protocol on climate change.
    GOOD GOVERNANCE ENVIRONMENT
  12. Madam Speaker, the New Dawn Government is committed to
    the fight against corruption and building strong governance systems. Government will, by the end of the year, publish the Governance Diagnostic Assessment Report. The Assessment will identify the main governance weaknesses and corruption vulnerabilities as well as measures to address them.
  13. Madam, Government will also implement fiscal, debt management, monetary and external sector policies that will stimulate growth and improve the livelihoods of our people. Government undertakes to adhere to transparency and accountability in the management of public resources.
  14. Madam Speaker, to demonstrate our commitment to these reforms and the fight against corruption, Government will increase funding to law enforcement agencies and oversight institutions.
    Fiscal Policy
  15. Madam Speaker, fiscal policy is anchored on the Eighth National Development Plan objective of attaining fiscal sustainability and
    34

creating a platform for inclusive growth. In 2023, the focus will be on improving the fiscal position by reducing the overall deficit to 7.7 percent of GDP from the projected 9.8 percent in 2022.

  1. Madam, to attain this objective, Government is strengthening compliance and administrative capabilities to generate more revenue while keeping the tax policy environment stable and predictable.
  2. Madam, Government will focus on containing public expenditures within sustainable levels. This will be achieved by ensuring strict adherence to priority projects, doing away with wasteful
    improving trade facilitation.
  3. Madam, to enhance compliance, Government will implement the following measures:
    (a) Use of Electronic Fiscal Devices. Government will expand the use of Electronic Fiscal Devices with enhanced functionality to all eligible taxpayers and shall be extended to turnover tax and the gaming and betting industry;
    (b) Interface of Government Systems. The ZRA Taxonline System will be interfaced with the Integrated Financial Management Information System and the Land Management System; and
    (c) Mandatory verification of tax liabilities. Government will make it mandatory for all public bodies to verify with ZRA any tax liabilities and withhold amounts owed to ZRA before making payment to suppliers of goods and services.
  4. Madam, to improve trade facilitation, Government will implement the following measures:
    (a) Border Management and
    35
    subsidies and
    procurement
    Government will also curb the accumulation of new arrears by enforcing the use of the Commitment Control System for procurement of goods and services.
    Domestic Revenue Mobilization
  5. Madam Speaker, revenue mobilisation will focus on strengthening compliance and
    improving procedures.

Trade Facilitation. Government will fully operationalise the Border Management and Trade Facilitation Act. This will include the implementation of the Coordinated Border Management Concept that will streamline the number

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