Zambia 2017 | INDUSTRY | COLUMN

TBY talks to Monica Musonda, CEO, Java Foods on the sector.

Monica Musonda

How easy is it doing business in Zambia?

There is nothing outright to prevent someone from starting a business in Zambia; there are hardly any obstructive regulations in terms of establishing a company and starting operations, unlike in some countries. However, we are faced with high costs of doing business, which perhaps is much less in other countries especially for SMEs. Our costs have also increased due to the power crisis, which means relying on generators sometimes to run operations.

What is your assessment of the government's financing scheme for MSMEs that is being launched as part of economic recovery?

It has been said that difficulty breeds innovation. What we are witnessing now is that many Zambians are looking at different means to make a living. But in order for MSMEs to flourish, we need to see more encouragement, greater policy direction (and timely implementation), and increased access to affordable finance. Because of this, I am wholeheartedly behind the government's initiative, which is, on the whole, a positive one.