By Nation Reporter
TWO big French delegations comprising different companies will be in Zambia to explore investment opportunities by the end of this year, says that country’s ambassador Emmanuel Cohet.
The ambassador said in an interview that France through its cooperation agency had invested around Euro 230 million in different economic sectors such as water and sanitation.
“France through our cooperation agency has invested in renewable energy, hydro, roads and water and sewerage. And for now our project portfolio in Zambia is around Euro 230 million,” he said.
Ambassador Cohet said many French companies wanted to invest in Zambia and as such, a big business delegation comprising investors in renewable energy and other sectors was expected in the country by the end of this year.
He said France wanted to be more active in the renewable energy sector as it was important to Zambia due to the current power shortages.
“Zambia is gaining a lot of interest especially in the solar sector and hydro although renewable is the key sector where French companies want to be more active and to engage more with your country.
“We want to be more active and we see Zambia as a very important partner for us, not only for Sothern Africa but also in the continent,” he said.
Ambassador Cohet said France already had about 32 companies investing in Zambia in areas such as agro food processing, agriculture and transmission lines.
“We have two priorities which are agriculture and agro food and renewable energy. We had for the first time in June a delegation of companies of 25 companies and we will have by the end of this year two big delegations coming to invest in agriculture and renewable energy,” he said.
He said these companies were focussing on job creation for Zambians while empowering them with different skills needed in industries.
The ambassador also said the interest by French companies to invest in Zambia symbolised the long-term relationship the two countries had enjoyed.