Consult local investors on policy formulation, says expert

GOVERNEMENT must consult local investors on investment policies if the country has to achieve the desirable goals, says development consultant Isaac Ngoma.

Mr Ngoma said Government must consult the local investors before pronouncing policies to avoid reversing them after they failed.

He said in an interview that lack of consultation resulted in policies being reversed and revoked.

“The problem in Zambia is that often times policies are made without giving sufficient thought to what they are intended to achieve and secondly they are put across without consulting,

Mr Ngoma said policies were key ingredients and fundamental aspects for achieving national economic objectives.

He said it was therefore important that policies were well thought out, remained consistent and not revoked unnecessarily because of failure to consult the desired environment.

“It depends on the environment in which the policies are being implemented and also what the intended gains are supposed to be,” he said.

Mr Ngoma said there were some policies which were retrogressive hence affecting the well-being of the economy.

“There are policies that have been retrogressive; for instance Zambia was pronounced to have a liberalised economy and changed foreign exchange regime and abolished exchange controls.

“Government then started implementing policies that are against the tendency of a liberalised economy and liberalised exchange regime,” he said.

He said it was very important that Government looked at formulation of policies and build consensus and desirable mechanisms

Mr Ngoma said Government must not apply policies because other countries implemented them and worked out well.

“Whatever Government does, it must have the end in mind, if Government says people are not taking advantage of the policies being put across it means they did not consult them first,” he said.