Things are really looking up for Zambia! Just last month, Hitachi, who are one of the largest manufacturers of construction, mining and earthmoving equipment in the world, unveiled the first ever multi-million dollar Japanese plant in the country.
The US$15 million, which is the largest Japanese project in Africa, has so far employed 120 Zambians and is expected to soon engage 40 more locals. It will be re-manufacturing large-scale mining equipment for export to various countries in Southern Africa.
According to Hitachi Construction Machinery Company vice-president Yukio Arima, Zambia Development Agency (ZDA) and other government bodies made a lot of efforts to make this project a reality. He also mentioned that Hitachi settled for Lusaka because of its centrality in the region. He further said Hitachi carried out feasibility studies in every part of Africa and Zambia was found to be ideal.
Apart from Zambia, other countries in the region that will benefit from the plant’s products include Botswana, Namibia, Mozambique and the Democratic Republic of Congo. It has further been mentioned that prior to the establishment of this plant, mines in the region were ordering spare parts from Canada and other far-off countries; this development used to delay production.
This is a great development not only for Zambia but the entire Southern African region. I now look forward to seeing many Japanese companies setting up their manufacturing plants in the region.