Monday, April 28, 2014

Govt to establish indeco
By By Joseph Mwenda
Wed 01 Jan. 2014, 14:00 CAT

PRESIDENT Michael Sata has set a 2014 national development roadmap focusing on job creation, industrial growth and intensified corruption fight. Addressing the nation on New Year's Eve, President Sata described the two years of the PF in power as peaceful owing to the support from the citizenry towards government's development programmes.

He said in 2014, the government would prioritise employment creation and uplifting the standards of living among people in rural areas.

"Employment creation remains our government's top most strategy for ensuring the stability of society and overall growth of the economy. To this effect, our government will in the New Year establish the industrial development corporation (indeco) which will focus on developing labour intensive industries and enterprises in the key areas of agriculture, construction, manufacturing, tourism, science and technology," President Sata said.

He said the government would continue to promote an open economy to attract investment and to expand the country's export opportunities through the accelerated development of multi-facility economic zones.

"Furthermore, steady progress is being made in infrastructure development such as roads, airports, rail and hydro-power stations in order to favourably compete in the global economy and create jobs. We are determined to revolutionise the infrastructure sector thus opening up this country in an unprecedented manner, thereby creating a competitive business environment and maximise economic growth activities," President Sata said and thanked Zambians for their support.

"As I address you on this New Year's Eve, I would like to thank the Almighty God for His continued blessings and mercy upon us. I would also like to thank the people of Zambia for their continued support to government and for maintaining peace and unity.

"After two years of the Patriotic Front in office, it is imperative for us to reiterate the goal of our government to accelerate progress in closing development gaps between our brothers and sisters in rural and urban areas, thus creating better opportunities for all."

He also promised an accelerated electrification of rural communities through the rural electrification programme.

"Looking forward in 2014, government will confidently accelerate the implementation of programmes such as the rural electrification programme whose focus is to connect rural communities to the power grid and will also commence an extension programme of mobile communications services to cover previously un-serviced rural areas in order to improve the people's living standards," President Sata said.

He pledged the government's commitment to ensuring more and affordable access to financial services among people of various income levels.

"This will promote the development of small-scale rural industries and improve agricultural production. In the same vein, we are determined to decentralise functions in our local government system to promote citizen participation and effective delivery of services in order to alleviate poverty," he said.

On education, President Sata said the government had placed a high priority on education and vocational skills development of youths as well as providing more Zambians access to quality health care services in a quest to create a better Zambia for all.

"In this regard, our government will in 2014 increase investment in the construction of schools, universities and trades institutes as well as the building and rehabilitation of health infrastructure across the country," he said.

President Sata further pledged to ensure that social justice continued to be at the core of government's policies.

"Our government is determined to take a giant step forward to raise our people's incomes, consumption and living standards. In 2014, we will continue to strengthen and uphold our democracy and good governance credentials as they are essential for national development," said President Sata.

"The fight against corruption remains one of the top priorities of my government's good governance agenda for next year and beyond. I wish you all a happy and prosperous New Year."

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