THE Zambia Development Agency (ZDA) has recorded US$2.6 billion worth of investment pledges and 11,500 pledged jobs from a total of 254 investment licences it has issued to various investors across all sectors of the economy between January and September 2016. ZDA director general Patrick Chisanga said among the areas with investment pledges, the manufacturing sector was top on of the charts with 43 licences issued. Mr Chisanga said US$525 million was pledged as investment and 3,030 pledged jobs in the manufacturing sector. “In the real estate sector the agency issued 36 licences worth a total of US$293 million pledged investment and 2,560 jobs. On the other hand, the energy sector has contributed US$870 million worth of pledged investment and 600 pledged jobs,’’ he said. Mr Chisanga said the agency also issued licences to the agriculture, construction, education, health, information communication technology, mining, services, tourism and transport sectors. He also said ZDA was working with Government to create an investment climate that could propel long term sustainable domestic growth which was in line with the agency’s blue print for the period 2016-2020. “The agency is resolute in building and enhancing the country’s investment profile for increased capital inflows, capital formation and employment creation and promoting the growth of micro, small and medium enterprise (MSME) sector. “This is in line with the agency’s blue print for the period 2016-2020, in which it has identified five high level goals that will contribute to Government’s targets which are creating new jobs, ensuring local business participation in regional and rural development and capacity building of MSME among others,” he said. Mr Chisanga said ZDA aimed at economic diversification, increased non-traditional exports and attracting foreign and local investment into strategic infrastructure and competitive sectors. “Through the strategic plan, ZDA is working towards contributing to the creation of wealth and one million jobs by promoting and facilitating investment, trade and enterprise development for the benefit of Zambians by 2020,” he said.