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NAPSA acquires shares in MTN Zambia

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The National Pension Scheme Authority (NAPSA) has bought an 8% stake in MTN Zambia through a share placement.

This was confirmed in a joint statement released by the two institutions on Wednesday.

Despite NAPSA being a public pensions fund, no financial details of the transaction have been released hence it’s unclear how much NAPSA has paid for the 8% shares in MTN Zambia.

NAPSA Director General Yollard Kachinda said “Zambia has in the recent years seen some significant growth in mobile telecommunications and digital technology.”

“Mobile data has transformed the way people conduct their day to day activities such as buying and selling of products and services. A mobile phone is no longer just a tool of communication, but an important component in trade and commerce and it is helping to reshape the way we conduct business,” said Kachinda.

The Director General said the extension of network coverage to remote areas was enhancing financial inclusion by extensive mobile money usage.

“Because of the increased network coverage across the country, people can easily send and receive money. This is helping people to access some of their basic needs, including food and health services without having to move long distances to access their money.”

He reiterated the importance of the development of telecommunications technology in pension administration.

“For us at NAPSA telecommunications technology has not only helped us to drastically improve service delivery to our members through introduction of mobile-based services but has also enhanced efficiency in the overall management of the scheme, leading to increased customer satisfaction.

“The technology has greatly helped us in extending social security coverage to the informal sector by simplifying the onboarding and payment processes. It is for this reason that we have put telecommunications as a key growth sector in our investment strategy,” he said.

And MTN Zambia Chief Executive Officer, Bart Hofker said, “MTN Zambia’s partnership with NAPSA was a demonstration of the shared vision with the Zambian government to make MTN a truly Zambian owned company and to continue to contribute to the Zambian economy.”

He said, “MTN Zambia is committed to partnering with local shareholders to ensure that the benefits of our investment in Zambia are shared with Zambians and we have now become truly Zambian.”

He added, “As part of our undertaking to the Zambia Information Communication Technology Authority (ZICTA), 8% of our shares are now held by NAPSA and this was done through a private placement process.

“As MTN Zambia, we are always looking out for innovative ways of giving back to our citizens because we realise that, in this highly competitive industry, Zambian citizens are more than key and they are simply the reason for our success as MTN Zambia,” said Hofker.

The MTN Zambia CEO further stated that MTN was contributing to government’s vision of achieving universal access and financial inclusion through usage of a broad range of quality and affordable financial services that meet the needs of individuals, enterprises and business.

MTN Zambia is owned by MTN International and for many years it has been attempting to offload some shares through a private placement to Zambian institutions. -Lusaka Times

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