TBY talks to Catherine N Phiri , Co-founder/Director, Media 365, on the sector.

Catherine N Phiri

What are the fundamental challenges limiting the ability of content producers to fully benefit from these opportunities?

Many in the creative industry have been championing the creative economy in Zambia, citing the film industry in South Africa, which contributes upwards of USD270 million to the economy annually while creating 35,000 jobs for the country. South Africa has several crucial things going for it, including a skilled workforce in content production. These are all things Zambia does not have. However, we do have a great deal of enthusiasm and passion, which has to be emphasized.

What needs to be done to boost skilled labor in the media industry in Zambia?

Skilled labor is a challenge across many industries in Zambia, but especially so in content production. Zambia does not have a film school to adequately train people across the various aspects of production, from scripting to technical areas such as lightening or sound engineering, through to post-production. And while people can be self-taught, the lack of appropriate skills also puts us at a disadvantage to create content that can compete internationally, or even regionally.