Mr. Kelvin Kamayoyo, Expo Advisor-Western Province has said the Western Province Tourism, Trade and lnvestment Expo scheduled for 10th to 15th October, 2022 has positioned the Province in the right trajectory towards economic transformation and rapid improvement in the standard of living of the people. The Expo countdown which is an initiative created by Kuomboka Media Agency a local media entity is welcome and is already acting as a preparation tracking tool ahead of the event.
Mr. Kamayoyo said the Expo will provide a unique platform for stakeholders’ constructive dialogue on a number of issues that impact on socioeconomic development and generally the welfare of local businesses. Therefore, the theme of the Expo dubbed “Rapid Economic Transformation through increased home-grown entrepreneurship, value addition and trade” is timely and resonates very well with the desired approaches to addressing the supply-side constraints in the business environment.
Mr. Kamayoyo said that it was interesting to note that the Western Province Chamber of Commerce and lndustry has proniunced a finite classification of priority sectors thus, “The BIG Seven (7) Potential Investment Sectors in Barotseland” which are livestock, agriculture and agro-procesing, timber processing, Tourism, fisheries, energy and mining exploration, and trading. All these sectors are important to Western Province and once exploited in a decent and innovative manner economic growth and socioeconomic transformation is obvious, said Kamayoyo. For instance decent and innovative exploitation of resources such as timber will guarantee sustainable utilisation of the forestry and also enable communities to adopt feasible alternative means of income generation such as engaging into honey production and trading in carbon credit while building climate resilience.
Mr. Kamayoyo emphasised that there was need for extensive discussions and stakeholders dialogue on the issue of reforestation and conservation vis-a-vis growing the manufacturing industries especially the furniture industry. The stakeholders in the Province may need embrace or develop a dedicated grand project for reforestation through massive tree planting and community vigilance to protect the indiscriminate cutting of trees.This could be complimented by a robust sensitisation programme of the local communities to help them realise that the forestry can be utilised as a viable resource for beekeeping to produce honey and wax products for exports as opposed to exercising insatiable appetite for cutting trees for charcoal business which unfortunately pose severe threat to the environment and stands unsustainable means of long term business survival. Further, the fisheries can be protected by sensitising the people on the available better fishing methods or practices so that the fish species and its population is not under severe threat of extinction, said Kamayoyo.