ESAFF Zambia continued to monitor the microeconomic fundamentals, their effect on public service delivery and poverty while advocating for appropriate policy and practice to improve the wellbeing of the citizens. Following two years of COVID 19 disruptions,2020 and 2021 threatened livelihoods, food security, nutrition and schooling and other economic activities especially the populations working in the informal sector. While the expected impacts in the agriculture sector and the economy were not yet out, a reduction in growth and investment
was expected. There was however gloomy news in that the copper prices during the period under review weakened from USD 9550 per metric tonne in December 2021 to USD 7422 per metric tonne in September 2022.
The political environment continued to be fairly stable with the New Dawn UPND
Government settling down implementing its campaign promises in the midst of a few tensions between the Government and the former ruling party and now opposition MMD Party. This has led to isolated acts of violence that are said to be tied to political tension but
which have since been contained. However, there are concerted efforts to revamp the economy and improve the livelihoods of the citizens in accordance with UPND Manifesto and especially after the disruptions caused by the COVID 19 which appeared in the country in March 2020, the situation appears to have been adequately contained though not completely eliminated. During the two years of economic distress in 2020 and 2021, the year 2022
recorded signs of recovery albeit slow.
Further, Zambia continued to engage with creditors to complete debt restructuring which would result in in debt reducing to affordable levels. During the same period the Mission from the International Monetary Fund continued (IMF) continued its visits to Zambia, during which it held consultations and discussions on debt restricting support. Despite indication on broad agreement on key objectives, targets and policies no consensus has yet been reached. There has not been any development in terms of moving forward with the recovery plan with or without the IMF. ESAFF Zambia will continue to monitor the situation on how this is going to affect the livelihoods of the rural and urban poor and the vulnerable groups, especially the small-scale farmers.
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