Zambia's investment promotion agency said Friday that the southern African nation only managed to secure 3.192 billion U.S. dollars in foreign direct investment out of the 7.293 billion dollars initially pledged.
Margaret Chimanse, communications officer of the Zambia Development Agency (ZDA), attributed this to lack of access to project finance, especially by small and medium-sized enterprises due to high lending interest rates and delays in electricity connection.
In a statement, the official said the investment resulted in the creation of 8, 255 jobs.
Other reasons for failure to actualize much of the pledged investment included delays in accessing tax incentives due to bureaucracy, difficulty in accessing land and shortage of technical labor in specialized fields of operation, she added.
According to the official, investors in the large enterprise category had pledged to invest about 1.666 billion dollars, but only invested 354 million dollars, which reflects a 21 percent implementation rate.
"For the micro and small enterprise category, investment pledges for the year under review hot 5.627 billion dollars and out of that 2.838 billion was secured, reflecting a 50 percent implementation rate," she added.