$10m Twin Palm shopping mall open for business
The Twin Palm shopping mall opened its gates to customers last week. It cost $10m to develop over a period of two years by PMTP Zambia and will be managed by Knight Frank Zambia. The mall has 26 stores with a combined workforce of 500 and boasts Shoprite as its anchor tenant. The shopping mall is adequately positioned to cater to residents of Ibex Hill, Avondale, Salama Park and Chainda.
The opening of this shopping mall embodies the strength of Zambia’s growing real estate sector as well as the increasing buying power of consumers in major cities around the country, especially Lusaka. Over the last year or so, we have also seen the opening of Makeni mall, Kafubu mall in Ndola and next year we will see Mukuba mall in Kitwe. Solwezi will also see shopping malls begin to pop up as retailers look to take advantage of the spending power of mining sector employees working for players like First Quantum Minerals who have invested billions into new projects to ramp up production of copper.
JICA pulls funding from Kazungula bridge project
The Japanese International Corporation Agency (JICA) withdrew funding for the bridge component of the Kazungula bridge project due to a tender evaluation dispute. The $259m project has three components to it – the bridge itself, an access road and two one-stop border posts. However, JICA will fund the access road and the border posts because the dispute lies exclusively with the awarding of the bridge tender to South Korean firm Daewoo E&C over two others. The project was supposed to have commenced last month but has been delayed as a result.
JICA was funding approximately 42 percent of the project, $110m - the bridge component of which is currently not known but should make up a significant portion. There was clearly an impasse as to whom the tender was awarded to between JICA and the Zambia/Botswana governments. Now the two governments have to come up with the rest of the cash themselves, get the African Development Bank to cover the balance or solicit funds from elsewhere. The Kazungula Bridge is important to the commercial interests of both countries because currently, truck drivers moving between these countries have to use two old pontoons to cross the border over the Zambezi river – a process which can lead to delays of up to a week. This is a landmark project that needs to be pushed through and executed with quality because its benefits will be felt for generations to come on both sides of the boarder.
Earnings releases: Lafarge and British American Tobacco Zambia
· Revenues down by 2.9% from the previous year to ZMW93.3m.
Trying to decipher this puzzle that is Zambia by using a variety of publicly available data (structured and unstructured) in conjunction with my own skill/experience. * * *