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Zambia short-lists 11 banks for Eurobond role


Reuters

By Tosin Sulaiman
April 23, 2012

LONDON, April 23 (Reuters) – Zambia has issued requests for proposals to 11 international banks seeking to act as book runners for its debut $500 million Eurobond, a government agency official said on Monday.

Goldman Sachs, BNP Paribas, Standard Chartered and Deutsche Bank were among the banks short-listed from an initial 16 that submitted expressions of interest, an official at the Zambia Public Procurement Authority, who asked not to be named, told Reuters.

There has been strong appetite for African debt and the last such issue from the region – a debut $500 million, 10-year Eurobond from Namibia launched in October – was heavily oversubscribed with an initial coupon of 5.5 percent. It is now yielding 4.95 percent.

The limited supply from African sovereigns has ensured that debut issues are eagerly anticipated, with Nigeria’s $500 million 10-year Eurobond last year attracting heavy demand.

The tender closes on April 27 and it would take a minimum of three weeks to evaluate the bids, the official said. So far, eight banks had confirmed their participation.

“Last week, we had eight confirmations from the short-listed bidders that they will take part in the tender,” he said.

The agency has also issued requests for proposals to two law firms, Clifford Chance and White & Case, seeking a role as legal advisers, he added.

The government of Africa’s number one copper producer announced plans to issue a Eurobond in November when it unveiled its first budget after an upset election victory two months earlier.

In February, tenders were invited for two book runners to act as joint lead managers, to assist in determining the size and pricing of the issue and coordinate road shows.

The official said the size of the issue had been confirmed at $500 million.

The other short-listed banks were Citigroup, Absa Capital/Barclays Capital, UBS, HSBC, JP Morgan, Standard Bank and Credit Suisse .

Proceeds from the Eurobond are earmarked for upgrading Zambia’s dilapidated infrastructure – spending that will create jobs and go down well in rural areas where President Michael Sata is seeking to boost his support.

However, investors may be wary after rating agency Fitch said in early March that it was revising the country’s rating outlook to negative from stable, citing concerns about the direction of economic policy in the southern African state.

It said Zambia’s recent decision to reverse a privatisation deal could undermine property rights, while planned reforms of the mining and banking sectors could negatively impact investment and consequently macro-economic stability.

Alarm bells were subsequently raised by the suspension of the political party status of the main opposition party because it had not been paying its annual registration fees.

“Even if the decision is overturned by the courts, Fitch highlights again the risks associated with sending a negative message on matters relating to economic policy, property rights and respect for the rule of law,” Fitch said. (Reporting by Tosin Sulaiman, editing by Ed Stoddard, Ron Askew).

The Winter Kabimba – Led Mission of Inquiry Into the Energy Regulation Board


UKZambians

By Mr. Brown Chibale Kapika

April 22, 2012

The Kabimba led Commission over the Energy Regulation Board Investigations involving more than 2 trillion kwacha oil procurement embezzled by named former government officials was the best and brave commission of inquiry Zambia has ever had since independence.

This Kabimba – led Commission of Inquiry came out with a very strong conclusion and a warning message to the Nation. It was not a witch hunting, but a real statement containing real facts including amounts of figure in millions, Contracts signed, Tender numbers, Names of Suppliers or Companies, Dates, Cargos, and all names of former government officials involved in this scandal.

However, I, as President of Adedo Zamucano and on behalf of Zambian People, recommend Mr. Kabimba and his group who sacrifice their time on this national duty for a job well done. I also thank President Sata for his courageous step he took to appoint Mr. Kabimba to head the commission of Energy Regulation Board Investigation…Read more

By Mr. Brown Chibale Kapika (BCK)

President for Adedo Zamucano Political Party – Zambia

Zambia: Inefficiency, expensive financing leads to high fuel cost


Times of Zambia

By Davies M.M Chanda,

October 31, 2011

THE Wynter Kabimba commission of inquiry on the Energy Regulation Board (ERB) has heard that Zambia has the highest cost of fuel in the mainland Southern African Development Community (SADC) regional bloc because of procurement inefficiency and an expensive financing arrangement.

The Zambia Association of Manufacturers (ZAM), in its written submission before the commission has proposed that Government should rationalise the tax regime for both crude and finished products by lowering them.

According to a written submission presented to the commission by the Zambia Association of Manufacturers vice-president Steve Mwansa, the price of diesel in 2008 for Botswana was US1.19, Malawi US$0.96, Mozambique US$1.05, Namibia US$1.04, South Africa 1.04, Swaziland US$0.99, Tanzania US$1.05 while the cost in Zambia was about US$1.48.

The submission made available to the Times yesterday state that Government should also issue permits to oil marketing companies to supply areas according to their geographical location such as Nacala development corridor supplying Eastern Province while addressing alternative routes such as Angola and Mozambique.

Mr Mwansa said with good practices as recommended by ZAM, the country’s cost of fuel could reduce and estimated 19 per cent for petrol while diesel price would drop by 17 per cent and that Kerosene would sale at 21 per cent less than the current price.

ZAM cited poor feedstock cargo formulation, lack of adequate national reserves, inefficient feedstock processing and underdeveloped infrastructure for the importation of the finished products. The association also stated that the taxation system was the highest within the mainland SADC member states and that Government levies, duties and other taxes were higher in Zambia compared to other countries. ZAM has since called for a more transparent procurement system for crude oil and comingled petroleum which should also reduce supply chain costs.

There was also a call for balancing the reduction in tax on fuel with the increased collections from other sectors such as mining. The tax in Botswana, Malawi, Mozambique, Namibia, South Africa, Swaziland and Tanzania ranges from 0.06 to 0.44 per cent while in Zambia, it stands at 0.55 per cent. The commission was constituted by President Michael Sata last month to establish what was causing the cost of fuel to remain higher than the rest of the region and establish bottlenecks in the procurement system.

Mr Mwansa said there was need to invest in preventive maintenance for the Tanzania-Zambia oil pipeline to reduce on the losses and that ERB percentage fees should be reduced. The commission is expected to hold its sittings today at the Mulungushi International Conference in Lusaka before moving to Ndola on the Copperbelt Province where sittings will take place at the council chambers.

Zambia: Sata reverses bank sale, says state house stinks with graft


PHOTO| AFP Zambia’s new President Michael Sata (right) reacts as he is congratulated by former President Rupiah Banda during his swearing-in ceremony at the Supreme  Court in Lusaka, on September 23, 2011.

PHOTO| AFP Zambia’s new President Michael Sata (right) reacts as he is congratulated by former President Rupiah Banda during his swearing-in ceremony at the Supreme Court in Lusaka, on September 23, 2011.

By ELIAS MBAO DAILY NATION Correspondent
Posted  Monday, October 3  2011 at  20:27

Zambia’s President Michael Sata today reversed the previous Government’s sale of a privately-owned bank to South Africa’s FirstRand, dissolved several parastatal boards and revealed that the nation, including State House, was “stinking with corruption”.

Speaking at State House after he swore in permanent secretaries and other senior Government officials, Mr Sata, who was elected two weeks ago, cancelled the Rupiah Banda-administration’s sale of Zambian-owned Finance Bank to South Africa’s FirstRand for $5.4 million.

“I have been doing a search [on] the so-called sale of Finance Bank, there isn’t even any document for sale. Therefore, I am instructing the Ministry of Finance to take the bank back to the owners of the bank, immediately,” President Sata said in a verbal decree.

The Banda-administration sold Finance Bank mid last month despite public disapproval. Mr Sata had promised during campaign that he would reserve the sale.

President Sata also dissolved, with immediate effect, the boards of the Zambia Revenue Authority (ZRA), state-run power utility – Zesco, the National Pension Scheme Authority (NAPSA).

Before his election, he had accused the three institutions of graft.

The President also said he had retired the former managing Director of Zesco, Mr Ernest Mupwaya in the public interest  and reinstated Mr Cyprian Chitundu who was previously the Managing Director but was ‘‘dismissed unfairly.”

The President also sacked Banda-appointed police chief, Francis Kabonde, and replaced him with Dr Martin Malama.

“The police have to help us sweep; there is so much dirty including this office where I am, there is so much corruption. So much corruption that this country stinks and that is why people cannot get what they want,” said President Sata, 74.

“Zambia is so dirty, even my own office, some of the people who are supposed to be guarding me they even benefited from corruption,” he said.

He vowed to fight corruption.

“I don’t need any corrupt money for my campaign or for my re-election or PF re-election,” said President Sata, adding that he wants his Government to serve Zambians not him as an individual.

The Zambian leader dismissed all 72 district commissioners that were appointed by the previous Government, saying they were politicians, and ordered them to immediately vacate their offices and houses.

We cannot have civil service positions given to political parties, he said. “I have therefore fired all the district commissioners and appointed civil servants to take over from them,” said President Sata.

He also abolished several Government positions.

The new leader called for mass investment in road construction countrywide.

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