Financial Data
Updated 23 Feb 2017


Zambia

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Overview

Zambia’s government has established an investment framework to attract international businesses, which includes low tax rates, reduced levels of red tape, and equal rights for foreign and domestic investors.

As such, Foreign Direct Investment (FDI) is growing significantly, driven by favourable conditions for foreign business ownership, investment incentives and special economic zones developed by the Zambian government. 

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Social overview

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Widespread rural poverty and high unemployment levels remain significant challenges within Zambia. It is estimated that 64% of the population live below the poverty line.

  • Population: 15 066 266 (2015 estimate)
  • Main languages: English, Nyanja, Bemba, Lozi, Kaonde, Tonga, Lunda and Luvale
  • The total number of languages spoken in Zambia is 73.
  • One-fifth of the working population are infected with HIV/Aids, which raises the costs of employment.

 

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Zambia’s people
  • 15 066 266 people (2015 estimate)
  • Rural poverty and unemployment levels remain a challenge. It is estimated that 64% of the population live below the poverty line.
  • Languages:English, Nyanja, Bemba, Lozi, kaonde, Tonga, Lunda and Luvale.
Environmental overview

Environmental challenges include air pollution, which results in acid rain in the mineral extraction and refining region, chemical runoff into watersheds, deforestation, soil erosion, desertification and shortage of adequate water treatment which presents human health risks.

Zambia has been affected by the El Niño weather phenomenon, which has brought about below-average rainfall and drought. This has affected the availability of water, which is essential for hydroelectricity generation.

Technology overview

In Zambia, more people own mobile phones than bank accounts. In 2014, there were 3.4 million mobile services users compared to two million bank accounts. This provides opportunities for mobile banking services. This increase in mobile phones and Internet connectivity has opened up a space for electronic banking and mobile money services in the country.

There has also been an increased interest in improving the telecommunications infrastructure, and the Zambian government entered into a partnership with Huawei Technologies to deploy 169 cellular towers in underserviced areas to sustain its rural expansion strategy.

However, companies currently operating in rural areas experience limited Internet connectivity, as infrastructure has been concentrated in urban areas. Improving Internet connectivity will play an important role in economic development and business processes in Zambia over the medium term.

The Bank of Zambia and the national telecoms regulator, Zambia Information and Communications Technology Authority (ZICTA), have signed a memorandum of understanding aimed at helping mobile money grow.

Tech outlook
  • There has been an increased interest in improving the telecommunications infrastructure.
  • Improving Internet connectivity will play an important role in economic development and business processes in Zambia over the medium-term.
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