The African Development Bank (AfDB) says about six thousand jobs will be created once the construction of the Batoka Hydro Power Project between Zambia and Zimbabwe commences.
This came to light during a high-level meeting in Abidjan, Ivory Coast on accelerating Africa’s growth and development that has been convened by AfDB to scrutinize the progress which it has made in facilitating the development of the continent.
The meeting is also evaluating the results achieved in AfDB supported programmes while at the same time examining plans to accelerate and scale-up programmes.
This is according to a press statement made available to ZANIS by Ministry of Finance, Public Relations Manager, Chileshe Kandeta in Lusaka today.
Mr. Kandeta said Under its High Five Initiative , the AfDB has identified Zambia as one of the beneficiaries from the USD758 million and integrate Africa programme, the USD59 million feed Africa Programme, and the USD2.5 billion quality of life improvement programme.
He said the Integrate Africa Programme is targeted at supporting the construction of a railway link between Angola and Zambia.
Mr. Kandeta stated that once constructed, the link will enhance trade and create an alternative route for Zambia’s exports from North-Western and Copperbelt Provinces.
He noted that the Integrate Africa Programme is also targeted at enhancing the supply capacity of the Southern Africa Power Pool by not only facilitating and galvanizing support for the Batoka Gorge Hydro Project, but also facilitating the completion of the Zambia-Tanzania-Kenya Power Interconnector.
And Minister of Finance Margaret Mwanakatwe has called on the African Development Bank to increase the capacity of implementation agencies in member countries in order to improve their resource absorption capacity.
The minister cited Zambia’s 19% annual absorption capacity of AfDB resources as a scenario in need of redress.
“This is to make sure that access to the benefits of development for the intended recipients are not delayed,” she said.
Meanwhile, African Development Bank President, Akinwumi Adesina said there is need to mobilise more resources in order to achieve the development targets of the bank through the High Five Initiative.
Dr. Adesina also announced that the AfDB will this year be organizing the first ever Africa Investment Forum in order to increase the international community’s attention on Africa’s growth potential and help channel resources to the continent.