Capital markets are essential for economic development and like in many countries, the markets have the potential to make a significant contribution to Zambia’s economic development. This intervention is timely and shall be instrumental in catalysing Zambia’s economic recovery and transformation, especially at a time when the country’s macro-economic fundamentals have demonstrated resilience in the face of increasing global socio-economic uncertainty. The economy is estimated to have contracted by 2.7% in 2020 due to the covid-19 pandemic. However, the economy displayed its resilience and the GDP growth rate averaged 4.1% between 2021 and the first half of 2022. In addition, the inflation rate reduced from 21.5% at the beginning of 2021 to 9.7% in October 2022, while the Kwacha for a unit of a dollar appreciated by 26% relative to 2021.
Notwithstanding, the country’s debt position remains unsustainable. Positive strides have however been made in this regard, with the IMF approval of an External Credit Facility (ECF) of $1.3 billion to dismantle the debt arrears. In recognition of this, the plan aims to contribute towards the development of Zambia while remaining cognizant of the country’s current realities. As a recent report from the International Organisation of Securities Commissions (IOSCO) notes, “deep, liquid, and well-regulated capital markets are instrumental in financing the economy and are the foundation for a thriving private sector – a key driver of job creation and growth”. Hence, the plan has been developed in line with the aspirations of the 8th National Development Plan (8NDP) as well as successor plans and Vision 2030. These aspirations include, among others:
This plan sets out an integrated national financing framework and notes that “financing the 8NDP will require policies, partnerships and an enabling environment that effectively mobilises and uses public finance and promotes impactful private finance”.2 The objective of this Capital Markets Master Plan (CMMP) is to ensure that Zambia’s capital markets, alongside some similar sectors in the plan, make their contribution to help Zambia realise its potential
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