PF’s new finance minister, Bwalya Ng’andu, said he wants to restart discussions with the International Monetary Fund about a bailout loan and that the government may delay the start of a controversial sales tax.
“I will be quite keen to get us talking and see whether we can get the program,” the 64-year-old said Monday in Lusaka after being sworn in to replace Margaret Mwanakatwe, who President Edgar Lungu fired the night before. “At least we can get to some point where we are discussing constructively. There are things on our side that we need to do. Fiscal health is part of what we need to do to be able to re-engage.”
Zambia’s efforts since 2016 to secure a $1.3 billion loan from the Washington-based lender have been stalled by concerns over its borrowing plans. The fund’s resident representative left the country in August and hasn’t been replaced.
* ZWD Comment: the problem has not only been Margaret Mwanakatwe. It’s PF at large. We doubt the IMF are dumb enough to be cheated by cosmetic changes at ministerial level when the underlying disastrous policies and inherent corruption, nepotism and dictatorship of PF remains intact. Besides, Bwalya Ng’andu himself is not clean. You will soon understand.