IMF: Zambia Should Focus on Rural Economic Development

The International Monetary Fund (IMF) says the benefits of Zambia’s economic growth should be directed to rural areas where the levels of poverty are alarmingly high.

Zambia’s poverty levels stand at 60 per cent with 80 per cent of those poverty hit people found in the rural areas of Zambia.

Speaking at the consultative forum between the IMF, Government and International Labour Organisation (ILO) dubbed ‘Towards a New Growth Strategy’ at Government complex in Lusaka, IMF director Africa department Sean Nolan said rural Zambia deserves development.

Mr Nolan said rural Zambia had the poorest people in Zambia and that deliberate Government policy that would target the rural areas would bring about equitable distribution of the economic benefits.

“Benefits of Zambia’s recent economic successes have evidently not trickled down to the poorest people and there is need for specific agenda to ensure that the poor people benefit and the poor are found in rural areas.

“Zambia is not alone in this challenge, it’s the entire Africa and since Zambia is on a diversification path, other key economic sectors should be brought into the mix to help the poor,” Mr Nolan said.

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