Govt studying defunct parastatals’ viability

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GOVERNMENT has stepped up a feasibility study of the defunct parastatal manufacturing firms to ascertain their future potential if they are to be recapitalised.

Companies on which the study was being undertaken include Mansa Batteries, Kawambwa Tea Company, Livingstone Motor Assembly and Luangwa Industries bicycle plant in Chipata.
Commerce, Trade and Industry Deputy Minister Miles Sampa said the companies would be assessed to see whether they would be capable of increasing their production capacity once recapitalised.
Mr Sampa said due to economic developments that had taken place over the years, recapitalising the companies would be irrelevant if a study was not carried out to know their viability.
The long years of dormancy had rendered infrastructure and equipment of the defunct firms outdated and obsolete and have even lost their production capability.
“The Government policy is to resuscitate all these dormant manufacturing companies but to do this, a feasibility study must be undertaken first because it may be unnecessary to recapitalise these firms if they are not found to be viable.
“For instance, Luapula Province at the moment is prone to low electricity supply and so, recapitalising Kawambwa Tea Company at the present moment could be very difficult because it is an energy intensive factory,” he said.
Mr Sampa, however, said the Government would implement strategic recapitalisation policies such as maintaing an enabling environment for foreign direct investments so that the industries were revived to create jobs and wealth for Zambians.
The Government would also utilise part of the mainstream development reforms under the Private Sector Reform Programme being implemented for pivotal wealth and job creation in the country.

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