Road Building Scheme Adds Further Support To Strong Forecast
BMI View : An 8,000km road building plan announced by Zambia has the potential to lift the country's construction sector growth into double digits. We are already optimistic about the country's growth prospects, with a corruption alleviation programme and 'pro-poor' agenda creating a more sustainable platform. The Patriotic Front Government appears to be following up reforms with funding, making the country conducive to growth .
The so-called Link ' Zambia-8000 ' programme is a three - phase road building scheme that envisages the construction and rehabilitation of 8,211km of roads and bridges in Zambia over a five - year period (October 2012-2017) . In total, the programme will see ZMK28trn (US$5.4bn) invested into the country ' s surface transport network. Zambia ' s road network is one of the worst in the region (rank ing 96 th out of 144 countries globally , according to the 2012/13 Global Competitiveness Report) , and is often cited as a barrier to the movement of transport and people . This weighs particularly hard on gr owth and poverty reduction.
The project is part of a 'pro-poor' agenda of the Patriotic Front Government, led by President Michael Sata. Sata came to power promising to root out corruption and support poverty reduction; he has made substantial progress on the former and looks set to improve the latter. The anti-corruption agenda has seen tough action, which has negated short-term growth. This has been particularly evident in the construction sector, including management changes at the state-owned utility and a freeze on construction to ensure proper permitting processes.
|Southern African Road Quality, Rank out of 144 (higher the rank = better road quality)|