The industrialization process could be an instrument for job creation, fully utilization of the country’s natural resources like agricultural produce, value addition to fetch premium prices, creation and expansion of both domestic and foreign markets. With the newly-adopted Integrated Industrial Development Strategy (IIDS) 2025, the government aims to accelerate the manufacturing sector’s growth through concentrated infrastructure investment and cluster formation.
Also for the sector to play its pivotal role of transforming the country from a least developed to a middle income semi-industrial one, the IIDS has to develop resource based industrialization and pragmatic institutional intervention.
“The industrial sector is considered as a rolling stock of economic growth and development, employment generation and poverty reduction,” said the Ministry of Industry, Trade and Marketing Permanent Secretary Ms Joyce Mapunjo during a consultative workshop on IIDS Strategy Master Plan last week.
She said the country’s industrial development has a critical role in determining the future pattern of growth by promoting production of competitive products with high tangible impact on poverty reduction. She said the master plan foresees improvement in coordination of all stakeholders involved directly in the industrial subsector, with enhanced linkages to those sectors with support to industrial development for sustainable growth.
Other sectors in support of industrialization process include rail for the rolling stock, agricultural and mining for producing raw materials while technology, research, innovation and education are catalytic inputs to attain higher heights of development. Ms Mapunjo said further that the recent growth performance suggests that enhancing the pace of structural change, diversification and increasing international competitiveness of the economy remain key challenges for sustainable growth.
Speaking at the same occasion, the Director for Industry Development, Ms Eline Sikazwe said the government role is to formulate policies, strategies and conducive environment for investment but the private sector remains the main actor in building competitive and sustainable industrial sector.
Equally, she said development partners and other non-state actors’ contribution is important in the realisation of the Sustainable Industrial Development Policy (SIDP) objectives.
“We need participatory approach with all stakeholders especially from the private sector in implementing the strategic policies,” she added. The Advisor for Industrial Development Mr Yoshiyasu Mizuno said the Integrated Industrial Development Strategy aims to accelerate the sector’s growth to 13 per cent by 2015 and up to 15 thereafter.
He further said that it also target to increase the manufacturing value addition from 1.8 billion US dollars (about 2.8tr/-) to 16.8 US dollars (about 26.8tr/-) in 2025 and count the sector’s contribution to the Gross Domestic Product (GDP) from the current 9 per cent to 23 by 2025.
“Learning from successes of Asian countries, IIDS is aiming to further accelerate the growth by establishing the country’s own development process focusing on the geographical advantages like long coastal line and logistic corridors to landlocked countries and the abundant natural resources,” he said.