THE setting-up of a fertiliser plant in Kabwe is a welcome development because it will contribute to reducing the cost of farming in Zambia.
With more emphasis being put on agriculture running away from dependence on copper, the move to set up a fertiliser plant will be a good song to the ears of the farmers.
The plant will equally cushion or reduce pressure on Nitrogen Chemicals of Zambia (NCZ) that is currently producing the commodity.
Kabwe has largely been considered as a ‘dead’ town save for the re-opening of the Mulungushi Textiles that will contribute more to the manufacturing sector in the area.
And indeed, the time has come for Kabwe to have an economic facility zone with the manufacturing of fertiliser being one of those projects that are long overdue.
Kabwe is well-known to have fertile land for farming, and having a fertiliser plant will increase productivity in the area.
Construction of this plant will see more jobs created as well as in the supply chain much to the improvement of the living standards of a good number of households in Kabwe.
Productivity tends to increase innovations and productivity gains, thereby improving the standards of living, and this is historically evident in manufacturing than any other economic sector.
In the supply chain, we expect to see more jobs created in various aspects such as transporters, distributors, farmers and agro dealers.
Furthermore, easy access to fertiliser would eventually compel more people to venture into farming because the commodity would be cheaper due to the law of supply on demand.
Establishing of such facilities should be encouraged because the country needs to broaden the manufacturing base.
Having a broader manufacturing base would ultimately attract more foreign exchange to the country because of the improved export portfolios.
We have seen how Zambia has suffered being an importing one, where the country is typically a trading ground.
Being a trading country is not good for a young economy like ours, because if you are not careful, you end up remaining a dumping ground and this dooms the economy.
Therefore, developments such as this one need to be promoted due to the huge benefits that come along with a sound manufacturing base.
We also commend the Government for the continued creation of an enabling environment for other players like Kabwe Municipal Council to thrive on as it will have more revenue collection base.
This shows that Government policies to improve the economy are bearing fruit and, subsequently, will benefit the citizens.